CSI governance and oversight

Life Healthcare’s CSI steering committee is mandated to allocate funds to approved projects which are focused on health and education. The committee is chaired by the Marketing and Communications Executive: South Africa and comprises of six other executive members. Corporate social investment activities are reported monthly at the executive management meetings and quarterly to the board social, ethics and transformation committee.

quick fact

A total financial contribution of R43.0 million was allocated to CSI (2016: R68.9 million).

Key focus areas for 2017

Cataract Surgery

Since 2006 our supporting ophthalmologists have undertaken pro bono cataract surgery in a bid to reduce the state sector cataract backlog. To date 1 313 pro bono cataract surgeries have been performed in Life Healthcare hospitals.

Operation Healing Hands

Operation Healing Hands is a Section 21 company formed by a group of doctors in private practice to undertake pro bono surgery. Life Healthcare supported the International Mandela Day activities of Operation Healing Hands by sponsoring theatre time and the ICU and hospital ward stays for a group of underprivileged patients receiving surgery. The surgeries were performed by a team of 10 surgeons and anaesthetists at Life Eugene Marais Hospital and Life Groenkloof Hospital in Pretoria. Doctors volunteered their time to perform these surgical procedures.

3D Printed mandibles

Life Healthcare partnered with the Centre for Rapid Prototyping and Manufacturing (CRPM), the innovation
and technology department of the Central University of Technology (CUT), Free State in a corporate social investment project called “Changing Faces – Changing Lives”. The project uses 3D-printed medical implants and prosthesis to conduct reconstructive surgery.

Key projects and initiatives

The table below highlights some of the Group’s key projects and initiatives in southern Africa.

CSI (foundation spend)     The Group established the Life Healthcare Foundation in 2007 to channel and expand the Group’s CSI, focusing on registered non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and not-for-profit organisations (NPOs). The foundation’s focus reflects the Group’s purpose of making life better. The Group has built relationships or partnered with a number of NGOs, supporting specialists, suppliers, academic institutions and the Department of Health adding further impetus to the foundation’s various initiatives.
Public Health Enhancement Fund (PHEF)     This collaboration between the National Department of Health and 23 private healthcare companies aims to leverage funds within the private sector to maximise benefits for priority projects, strengthening the public health system. Life Healthcare pledged a fixed annual contribution over an initial period of three years. Ultimately, it is envisaged that this institutional engagement will assist in shaping a better future healthcare system for South Africa.

The initial projects aimed to build human capital capacity to address the challenges of HIV and Aids, and to develop leadership capacity within the public health system.

The cumulative value contributed is R31 million (2016: R26 million), which links the contribution to the social economic development pillar of the B-BBEE Act. There are 74 undergraduate medical students in the programme, all of whom are from previously disadvantaged backgrounds.

Pro-deo (reduced or no cost to patient)     Patients who cannot afford to pay their bills receive reduced accounts or free services, especially for visits to the emergency units. Patients who require emergency treatment are treated irrespective of their ability to pay and referred to the public sector hospitals for further management thereafter.
Move it – Moving Matters     An age-appropriate, curriculum-based intervention programme for children at primary and high school levels that promotes physical activity to youth at various schools. The programme began in 2014, with annual contributions that will total R2.8 million over a four-year period. R1.2 million was contributed in 2017 (2016: R855 000).
Life Healthcare/CMSA sub-specialist bursaries     The Group committed R78 million over six years (2013 – 2019) to sponsor doctor sub-specialist training, which takes between two and three years to complete. Since 2013, a total of 22 sub-specialists have completed their training. Further candidates were identified to commence training in 2018.

Scanmed’s CSI actions include inter alia:

  • Scanmed supports the Foundation Mam Marzenie, which is a non-governmental organisation that supports children and young people with serious and life-limiting conditions, to fulfil a personal dream.
  • Preventative screenings were performed at 33 different locations for more than 540 people, free of charge. Screenings include prostate disease, lung and eye disease, orthopaedics, gynaecology and urology, dietetics, diabetology. These screenings are performed for indigent patients.
  • Support is provided to AGH University of Science and Technology through an adaptation program and various preventative medical interventions for students and university staff, all of which are free of charge.
  • The business is a partner of the fifth edition of the Leadership Program for Health Care, organised by the Foundation Lesław A. Paga, an education support organisation. The program is aimed at students in medical universities in Poland. This year’s programme was attended by more than 600 students with three ultimately being incorporated as trainees.

Key focus areas for 2018

Pro bono surgery to indigent patients will be the key focus for 2018, following the increased requests from supporting specialists.