Source: Medical insurance for Zimbabweans in SA | The Herald March 25, 2019
Leroy Dzenga Herald Correspondent
Government is considering providing health insurance services for Zimbabwean citizens based in South Africa.
The issue, which was agreed to by the Zimbabwean and South African governments during the recent Bi-National Commission, will see public health insurance provider Premier Medical Aid Society (PSMAS) setting up offices in South Africa.
According to minutes from the Bi-National Commission meetings seen by The Herald, Zimbabwe made the request and South Africa granted it.
August 2019 was set as the deadline for PSMAS to have registered in South Africa.
PSMAS public relations manager Mr Arthur Choga confirmed their participation in the Zim-SA Bi-National Commission.
“We participated in the Bi-National Commission after we realised that there is need for the services we offer,” he said.
“South Africa is home to a sizeable number of Zimbabweans and we believe that there are issues that they face that may be resolved by PSMAS getting registered to operate in South Africa.”
This is a plan which has been under deliberation for a while and the platform provided an opportunity for the public health insurance service provider.
“Reasonable groundwork has been covered over the last few years towards the realisation of this objective and the BNC presented an opportunity to share our vision with a wider audience, including policy makers,” said Mr Choga.
“The research we have conducted over the last few years shows that there is room for the services we offer and we believe our model will be competitive and relevant.”
The PSMAS leadership believes the move will help the firm ease foreign currency pressures being faced by the country.
“The model we use will be largely self-funding,” said Mr Choga. “As we grow, we are exploring ways of unlocking value for members and for the national health delivery system.
“We see this as an opportunity to unlock forex inflows in order to fund areas such as procurement of drugs which are currently expensive and difficult to access because of foreign currency challenges.”
PSMAS is a public health insurance company which commands around 70 percent of the local market share.