Health inquiry’s crossed wires will delay its progress on real problems
Report on Remgro and AfroCentric shows no understanding of competition or the way the sector works
The Competition Commission’s health market inquiry has published research reports in its investigation of the private healthcare sector in SA. The aim of these reports is to stimulate debate and ultimately reach a finding on what could be done to fix a range of problems in the sector. These reports have generally dealt with core issues, and stakeholders have had ample time to comment, contributing to the process. Last Friday, however, the inquiry changed course when it published its latest research note considering cross-ownership and cross-directorships in the private health sector. This report is littered with allegations of implied misconduct against many of the larger private healthcare players, while not a shred of evidence is produced. In this form, it reads more like the next chapter of the white monopoly capital saga than a research report produced by a well-respected body such as the Competition Commission. This is a pity for many reasons. The debate on the role of private ...