The Public Health Enhancement Fund (PHEF) was set up by the Department of Health and the private sector in 2012 to strengthen and improve public healthcare in South Africa, through increased cross-sector collaboration and the pooling of corporate social investment (CSI) in health. The Fund, which is managed by the private sector, invests in three key projects:
- The expansion of health professionals aims to help alleviate the shortage of doctors and medical specialists by increasing the capacity of training institutions to attract and retain students from disadvantaged backgrounds and rural communities.
- The academy for leadership and management in healthcare is currently on hold due to ongoing discussions about whether the programme should fall under the Departments of Health or Higher Education and Training.
- Support for the training of Masters and PhD students for the combating of HIV/Aids and tuberculosis, by providing scholarships to medical students who want to pursue research into clinical, health systems and biomedical sciences in these fields.
The PHEF website lists 25 healthcare and pharmaceutical partner companies, including Aspen, Bayer, Clicks, Discovery, Mediclinic, Medscheme, Netcare, Pfizer and Roche. Participants are required to contribute 75% of their socioeconomic development spend to the Fund. Participation does not come at an additional cost unless companies decide to exceed their 1% net profit after tax CSI spend.
Business in Society Handbook, 2018