PREPARATIONS to the 20th annual Board of Healthcare Funders (BHF) of southern Africa conference to be held in Capetown, South Africa form July 21 to 24, 2019 are in place amidst indications that the gathering will attract participation from most African countries.
By Michael Gwarisa
The conference is set to explore a future-focused approach to healthcare. The theme of the conference, Convergence 2030 – Healthcare reimagined, will reflect on the past 20 years and define the desirable future for healthcare systems for the year 2030 and the role of convergence in achieving this.
It will discuss current achievements in healthcare and identify solutions to ensure the region meets the healthcare goals set out in the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and those in the South African National Development Plan (NDP). The conference will take place from 21 to 24 July 2019 at the Cape Town International Convention Centre (CTICC), Cape Town, South Africa.
A key focus of the conference will be on understanding the role of multisectoral convergence in delivering quality health services and the importance of scaling up and creating more access for the health citizen. With the increased interconnectedness of various stakeholders within the healthcare sector, it would be remiss not to explore opportunities for collaboration.
Twenty-five-years into South Africa’s democracy, we are looking at ways in which we can fast-track efforts towards achieving universal health coverage, taking stock of what has been achieved to date and what still needs to be achieved,” says Dr Katlego Mothudi, managing director of the Board of Healthcare Funders of southern Africa.
He says fragmentation remains a challenge in healthcare. South Africa has a fairly well-developed private healthcare sector, yet, the country’s healthcare system is still not integrated, which has resulted in disparity in reaching desired healthcare outcomes.
While it is encouraging that over the years, there has been intersectoral dialogue across the sector, more effort needs to be made in bringing together the public and private healthcare systems – as the current fragmented model is unsustainable for the future.
Critically reflecting on the private sector’s contributions towards the country’s overall healthcare progress, Mothudi says, “One of the biggest learnings of the past 20 years is that the private sector needs to take part and be involved in the overall healthcare planning of the entire sector. This would be a major step towards achieving universal health coverage and desired healthcare outcomes for 2030.
These among other issues will be discussed at the 20th Annual BHF Conference. Regional and global speakers will provide perspectives of their experiences relating to future planning for healthcare outcomes.
Various stakeholders are currently involved in scenario planning in preparation for the conference and the Healthcare 2030 – Healthcare Reimagined Scenarios will be presented and further unpacked at the conference.
To date the conference has attracted healthcare industry professionals from across the world, including healthcare providers, expert healthcare speakers, academics, healthcare providers, medical schemes, administrators, managed care organisations, NGOs, pharmaceuticals, policy makers and public sector representatives.
Last year the conference attracted over 1,000 delegates, including international and regional speakers, from the US, Kenya, Egypt and Rwanda.
A plethora of topics will be covered during this year’s conference, including medical scheme governance, understanding the role of intersectoral convergence in the delivery of health services, convergence of ecosystem technologies and disruptive innovation.
Other topics will include the importance of price transparency for hospitals and medicines, human resources for health, latest trends in mental health, patient-centric health systems, overutilisation, waste and abuse of medical services: a global perspective, the evolution of ‘smart healthcare’, the transformation of healthcare administration through empowering patients and creating differentiated value, revised PMBs latest innovation in diabetes management, value based contracting and standards, managing healthcare, and cost drivers.
Various cases studies from Rwanda and Malawi on universal healthcare and its cost drivers, collaboration on fraud waste and abuse, breast cancer and prospects will also be featured, among others.
Over 350 organisations will be represented at the conference from 25 countries.
Speakers include, Dr Khama Rogo (Kenya) Leader health sector specialist from the World Bank Group; Torrie Fields (USA), senior manager of advanced illness & palliative care: from Blue Shief of Carlifornia; Stephen Tjiuiro (Namibia), CEO, Namibian Association of Medical Aid Funds (NAMAF); Leon Wang, Executive vice president AstraZeneca, and country President, China; Nir Kaminer (Sweden), founding partner of Medical Reviews International; Dr Neil Nyirongo (Malawi), economist; Charles Dalton (UK), senior health specialist, International Finance Corporation; Michael D. Fratkin (USA), managing director of FAAHPM; Vulindlela Lester Ndlovu (Zimbabwe), CEO, Cimas Medical Aid Society (Zimbabwe), Dr Christian Stoeckigt (Germany), Hologic Deutschland Wiesbaden German Head of Scientific Affairs EMEAC diagnostics Solution.
Local speakers will include Dr Imtiaz Sooliman, Gift of the Givers foundation, Neo Khauoe, principal officer, Polmed; Grizelda Zubi, Insight Actuaries and Consultants; Advocate Reaone Gaoraewe Council Member Council for Medical Schemes, Varsha Vala: Head of Digital and Customer Experience MH and MMI Health, Mark Bayey Managing Direct Universal Health Administrators it; Dr Ntuthuko Bhengu, panel member: Health Market Inquiry, Commissioner: SA National Planning Commission and a chartered director; Anthony Pedersen, CEO: Medscheme Holdings, Johannes Malose Seoloane, curator: SAMWUMED; Grace Khoza, general manager: stakeholder relations: Council of Medical Schemes (CMS); Dr Visegan Subrayen, programme manager for the GP Care Cell model: PPO Serve.