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SA’s cash-strapped economy translates into the government spending less per person on health, with doctors’ and nurses’ posts being frozen‚ requiring permission from the Treasury and provincial leaders to be filled. This was detailed in the South African Health Review 2017, in a chapter written by Treasury staff and health analysts‚ released on Wednesday morning. The admission that "most provinces have imposed some form of restrictions in terms of filling vacant posts" is in stark contrast to denials earlier this year by the health minister that posts had been frozen. The review’s figures detail the dire financial situation and includes the admission that doctors and nurses can only be hired with a premier’s permission and provincial treasuries’ sign-off. The health budget grew from 8.5% to 10% between 2009 and 2012‚ but has leveled off since then, increasing by only 1.1% in the past financial year. Staff costs rose 8% above inflation between 2006 and 2015‚ partly due to an occupati...

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