The Black Business Council (BBC) is seeking an urgent meeting with Health Minister Zweli Mkhize and all role players to discuss the alleged racial discrimination by medical aid schemes.
This after the Council of Medical Schemes (CMS) set up a Section 59 investigation to probe allegations of racial profiling and payments to African and Indian doctors being withheld by medical aid schemes.
Black doctors are arguing that they are excessively audited by medical aid schemes and then accused of claiming fraudulently.
They are also allegedly expected to provide confidential patient information to prove their claims are genuine.
At the week-long public hearings last week, African and Indian doctors testified how they were bullied by medical aid schemes who queried their claims and refused to pay, which had left some of them destitute.
They further alleged that medical aid schemes demanded proof of consultation, including clinical notes, while their white counterparts were simply required to “verify” a consultation before payments were made.
Organisations and individuals made submissions and gave evidence on the allegations of racial profiling, black listing for payments, blocked payments, demands of confidential clinical information, bullying and harassment, coercion, entrapment and use of hidden cameras.
Medical aid companies and stakeholders will have until the end of September to make their submissions. The final report will be submitted by the Investigating Panel on 1 November 2019.
The BBC — a confederation that represents black professional, business associations and chambers — said in a statement that it has met with the National Health Care Professionals Association and is now seeking meetings with health minister Mkhize.
“As a matter of principle, the BBC frowns upon any case of discrimination against black entrepreneurs and black professionals in both the private and public sectors of the economy. As such, the BBC would call for the harshest of measures, should any scheme be found to have mistreated any medical practitioner.”