The state’s health sector is going to get an extra R21.5 billion for spending on Covid-19, largely through money moved around in the February budget. Most of it comes from amounts that were previously in the budget and have been “re-prioritized”.
Health Minister Tito Mboweni referred early in his budget speech to the money going to the health sector.
In addition to the R21.5 billion for spending on Covid-19-related healthcare, a further allocation of R12.6 billion was also allocated to the services provided at the forefront of the response to the pandemic, but it is not going to health departments no.
The R21.5 billion was partly re-prioritized from the previous budget and partly from new financing.
Of that amount, R16 billion comes from provinces for Covid-19 and R5.5 billion for the national health department, including conditional re-prioritization grants.
Of the R5.5 billion the department receives for Covid-19, R2.6 billion has been re-prioritized in the department and R2.9 billion is additional funding obtained from elsewhere in the budget.
According to Mboweni, the allocations are based on the epidemiological models drawn up about the pandemic and a cost model for the national health sector for Covid-19 based on the experience of the past 100 days.
The budget review said since the budget was announced in February, the response to the virus has become the central priority of the government.
“Because the required health response is greater than originally anticipated, R21.5 billion is allocated to this.”
The health budget in the government’s main budget was R55.5 billion in February and the new budget proposed is R58.4 billion.
The R2.9 billion more that raises the health budget was partly raised by removing money from projects that are under-funded or projects that can be postponed.
Expenditures will be constantly monitored to determine if another adjustment is needed later in the year.
The additional money the program receives is intended for tests, Cuban doctors, contracting with private hospitals, personal protective equipment and thermometers.