Goal 1: Policy

New and existing policies are rural-friendly

Good quality and comprehensive health care for rural communities starts with the design of policies that are appropriate for the rural health care context. The rural health care context often implies “doing more with less”; it is most often a context of high levels of poverty and ill-health, without ready access to specialists, intensive and/or high technology care, and where resources, both human and material, are lacking. From a patient perspective, it also means rural communities often spend disproportionate amounts of time and money trying to access the health care and treatment that they require.

General health policies, or policies designed with more resourced urban settings in mind, are seldom automatically implementable in rural areas. There is thus a need to take the rural context into account at all stages of policy development. This process of inclusion of the rural context is popularly reffered to as ‘rural-proofing’.

Under this strategic objective, the RHAP advocates for rural-friendly policies; this implies analysing existing and new general health policies through a rural lens, as well as advocating for specific rural health policies. The end goal is to ensure that existing and new legislation, strategies and frameworks will advance the equitable access of rural communities to comprehensive, high quality health care that meets their health needs.

The District Hospital and PHC

The District Hospital and PHC

RuDASA and RHAP ares convinced that the Primary Health Care approach should be the foundational principle on which our national healthcare service is built. We are, however, concerned that the documents pertaining the re-engineering of PHC, have not recognised the important role that a well functioning district hospital (DH) could (and in fact ...

Rural-Proofing the PHC Re-Engineering Strategy

The Rural Health Advocacy Project (RHAP), the Rural Doctors Association of South Africa (RuDASA), the Wits Centre for Rural Health and KZN Centre for Rural Health strongly support the drive by Government to re-engineer primary health care (PHC). We agree that a strengthened PHC approach within a functional District Health System (DHS) is impera ...

Rural-Proofing South Africa’s Laws

By Nealon Devore, ONE The RHAP was the final runner-up for the 2012 One Africa Award! Read this blog by One’s Nealon Deavore: With two-and-a-half staff members RHAP has made a name for itself in South African policy and medical circles in less than two years. Seeking an avenue for their voices to be heard, RuDASA (Rural Doctors Associatio ...

The new NSP on HIV, STIs and TB 2012-2016 sets goals for rural health

In September RHAP and RuDASA made a submission to SANAC on the National Strategic Plan on HIV, STIs and TB, Draft Zero. The needs of rural communities were overlooked. We are therefore glad to announce that the final NSP, launched on World AIDS Day, explicitly identifies rural communities as a vulnerable group with rising HIV prevalence. Amongs ...

IST reports on the state of the health system and the public’s right to know

More than a year after their finalisation and after many frustrated attempts by civil society organisations and the media to access them – including through the Promotion of Access to Information Act, 2000 – SECTION27 and the Rural Health Advocacy Project (RHAP) have finally been leaked copies of all the provincial reports compiled by the Integ ...