The Open Public Health Journal

ISSN: ― Volume ,

Awareness, Knowledge and Perception of The National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) Among Health Professionals in Mthatha General Hospital, Eastern Cape, South Africa

Olawumi Oladimeji1, *, Adeyinka Alabi2, Oladele Vincent Adeniyi3
1 Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Communication, Fort Hare University, Alice, Eastern Cape, South Africa
2 Walter Sisulu University, Faculty of Health Sciences/Dora Nginza Hospital, Port Elizabeth, South Africa
3 Walter Sisulu University, Faculty of Health Sciences/Cecilia Makiwane Hospital, East London, South Africa



This Eastern Cape study assessed the awareness, knowledge and perceptions of the healthcare professionals in Mthatha General Hospital on National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS).


A descriptive cross-sectional study was conducted among health professionals at Mthatha General Hospital. A simple random sample of 100 participants drawn across the various categories of health professionals responded to a validated questionnaire on awareness, purpose and challenges of implementation of NHIS.


Of the total (N=100), 86 health professionals returned the questionnaire (response rate=87%); 54 female (63%) and 32 male (37%). The majority of the respondents were nurses (67%) and doctors (28%). Others were radiographers (n=2) and clinical associates (2). The majority of the respondents (89.5%) were aware of NHIS and their sources of information on NHIS were: seminars and meetings (n=32), television and radio (n=26), friends and family members (n=14), newspapers (n=10) and internet (n=4). Good understanding of the objectives of NHIS was demonstrated by 81.3% (n=70) of the respondents. The poor state of health facilities and inadequate staffing across the country were reported as the major impediments to the implementation of NHIS. However, the majority of the respondents (n=64) expected that the quality of healthcare service delivery would improve by increasing the staff strength in the various health facilities.


The majority of the health professionals in this setting were aware of NHIS. Both the infrastructure and staff strength require the attention of the health authorities in order to effectively implement the scheme in the district.

Keywords: National Health Insurance Scheme, Universal Health Coverage , Perception, Awareness, Challenges, Radiographers, Infrastructure.

Article Information

Identifiers and Pagination:

Year: 2017
Volume: 10
First Page: 187
Last Page: 194
Publisher Id: TOPHJ-10-187
DOI: 10.2174/1874944501710010187

Article History:

Received Date: 20/05/2017
Revision Received Date: 31/07/2017
Acceptance Date: 26/09/2017
Electronic publication date: 24/10/2017
Collection year: 2017

© 2017 Oladimeji et al.

open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0), a copy of which is available at: This license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the Faculty of Social Sciences Department of Communication Fort Hare University, Alice, Eastern Cape, South Africa, Tel: +27825856050; E-mail:

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