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Parliament, Wednesday, 18 September 2019 – The Portfolio Committee on Health has commended the National Health Laboratory Services (NHLS) on turning around the institution after it had experienced financial challenges for some years.

The committee was briefed by the NHLS on its annual performance plan and budget for 2019/20.

Briefing the committee, the NHLS indicated that they have revenue growth and reserves and are doing well financially. Over the last two years, the board and management has stabilised and improved the NHLS.

Committee Chairperson, Dr Sibongiseni Dhlomo, said: “We would like to thank the provinces that had delayed payments to the NHLS and have since come to the party and paid their debts, this assists the institution to do well in its financials.”

The committee said it is encouraging that the NHLS tackled its financial problems to an extent that the institution finds itself in a healthy financial situation.

The committee noted with concern the report tabled by NHLS of non-communicable diseases (NCD) diagnostic test that they do because they are doing an increasing number of diagnostic tests on NCDs.

This then means the country is having an epidemic of non-communicable diseases, and yet South Africa is a country that has not actually controlled communicable diseases. Therefore, it means there is both non-communicable and communicable diseases at the highest peak in the country.

Dr Dhlomo said: “Non-communicable diseases group is a preventable group of diseases, it is within our choice to prevent complications of diabetes to prevent the early onset of diabetes and hypertension. We would really want us to be very strong on those predisposing factors which the NHLS raised, such as alcohol and tobacco use, other drugs and unhealthy lifestyle.

ISSUED BY THE PARLIAMENTARY COMMUNICATIONS SERVICES ON BEHALF OF THE CHAIRPERSON OF THE PORTFOLIO COMMITTEE ON HEALTH, DR SIBONGISENI DHLOMO.

For media enquiries or interviews with the Chairperson, please contact the Committee’s Media Officer:

Name: Ms Yoliswa Landu
Parliamentary Communication Services
Tel: 021 403 8203 
Cell: 081 497 4694
E-mail: ylandu@parliament.gov.za