How are health services accessed? | South Africa How are health services accessed? | South Africa

13 Aug 2022

Rationed by waiting lists and queuing systems, public healthcare services are accessed via a District Health system, as the preferred government mechanism for primary care service provision for the majority of South Africans (Mahlathi & Dlamini, 2015). Services are accessed through public clinics, public hospitals, community health centres/clinics and ambulance services, and governed by the use of Norms and Standards.

The PHC sector has around 3500 clinics and health centres across the country that is accessible within 5km to more than 90% of people living in South Africa (McKenzie et al., 2017).

Private healthcare services are accessed by those who have medical insurance, or those who pay the private rates and fees attached to these private and specialist services, via private practices and hospitals.


Mahlathi, P., & Dlamini, J. (2015). MINIMUM DATA SETS FOR HUMAN RESOURCES FOR HEALTH AND THE SURGICAL WORKFORCE IN SOUTH AFRICA’S HEALTH SYSTEM: A rapid analysis of stock and migration. Available from: http://www.prographic.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/0316-south-africa-case-studies-web.pdf

McKenzie, A., Schneider, H., Schaay, N., Scott, V., & Sanders, D. (2017). Primary Health Care Systems (Primasys). In World Health Organization and Alliance for Health Policy and Systems Research. Available from: https://apps.who.int/iris/bitstream/handle/10665/341145/WHO-HIS-HSR-17.38-eng.pdf?sequence=1