Hon Chair, the National Public Health Institutes of South Africa Bill, NAPHISA, was processed in both Houses in the 5th Parliament. It went through the process of revival in this House hence we are tabling it for consideration.
In 1994, the democratic government began a process of transforming the deep- rooted dysfunctional public health system which manifested itself in the collusion of epidemics of communicable and non-communicable diseases in South Africa. The public health system has and continues to correct the colonial policies of subjugation and apartheid disposition which both determine inferior health care services to the majority of the South Africans.
To this end, this Bill is imperative because it is a step towards refinement of the public health system for the people of South Africa. The aim of the NAPHISA Bill is to provide integrated and co-ordinated diseases and injury surveillance research, monitoring and evaluation of services and interventions directed towards the major public health problems affecting the South African population.
The International Association of National Public Health Institutes serves as a strong advocate for countries to have a unified credible, legal structure such as NAPHISA to improve the protection of public health through collaboration, research and surveillance of various diseases, as we face the quadruple burden of disease in our country.
Accordingly, the NAPHISA BILL is envisaged to enhance health systems effectiveness by performing some of the following functions.
a. Co-ordinate, develop and maintain surveillance systems to collect, analyse and interpret health data to guide health interventions. b. Strengthen capacity in public and occupational health surveillance in order to reduce the burden of disease and injury.
c. Use surveillance data and other sources of information where appropriate to advice on the setting of health policies priorities and planning.
d. Strengthen the cross-border regional and international collaboration on cancer surveillance, occupational health, non-communicable diseases, injuries and violence.
e. Use public health information for monitoring and evaluation policy interventions.
f. Strengthen advocacy, social mobilisation and partnerships in order to address all the other quadruple burden of disease I have mentioned above.
The NAPHISA Bill recognises that South Africa does not have an integrated surveillance system, but different institutions that deal with different aspects of surveillance which leads to duplication, fragmentation, inefficiency and wastage of scares resources.
In correcting this challenge, the Bill states that NAPHISA will comprise of all the following divisions. Cancer surveillance, occupational health, environmental health, communicable diseases, non-communicable disease, injury and violence prevention.
The clustering of these divisions will make NAPHISA a national strategic entity that is remarried on safeguarding the public health system for our country.
The National Development Plan, NDP, together with the World Health Organisation, WHO, underscores the importance of efficient strengthening and co-ordinated national health systems for prevention of illnesses and realisation of health outcomes. Furthermore, the International Association of National Public Health Institutes attributes better health outcomes for our countries that form national public health institutes and urge for countries to do the same.
Some of the countries that have established national public institutions include Brazil, Finland, while others formed theirs more recently. Some of the national public institutes were formed in responses to public health challenges that highlighted the need for specific capacity leadership and co-ordination such as public health urgency of Canada which was formed following the 2002 severe acute respiratory syndrome, SARS, outbreak. Others resulted from restructuring of public care services such as the United Kingdom and China.
The Bill is resuscitated from the 5th Parliament as I have mentioned where there was a consultation with social cluster departments namely, social development, education, women, children and people with disabilities.
In conclusion, it is noted that since the outbreak novel of corona virus from China in December 2019, South Africa has not had any confirmed cases. Accordingly, this Bill has come at an opportune time for it to be processed as we may face global epidemiology of diseases, mitral valve, aorta, skeleton, and skin, Mass, Sars, Ebola, Listeriosis and novel Coronavirus, which all have devastating socio impact in the country. The committee is bringing the NAPHISA Bill to the House for consideration. I thank you. [Applause.]
There was no debate.
The CHIEF WHIP OF THE MAJORITY PARTY moved: moved that the Bill be passed.
Declarations of vote made on behalf of the Democratic Alliance, Economic Freedom Fighters, Inkatha Freedom Party, Freedom Front Plus, African Christian Democratic Party, National Freedom Party and African National Congress.
Motion agreed to (Economic Freedom Fighters dissenting).
Bill accordingly passed.
DECLARATION OF VOTE - Ms E R WILSON Dr S M DHLOMO
Declaration of vote: