Speakers & Programme

Dr Niti Pall
Dr Niti PallMedical Director KPMG Global Healthcare practice

Dr Niti Pall, medical director, KPMG Global Healthcare Practice, is a visionary senior clinician, who has combined clinical practice with an entrepreneurial edge to design and deliver new models of health care in the UK and international markets using an inclusive and creative style to ensure buy-in from teams. She is highly skilled at building sustainable networks for improving patient care across boundaries, particularly with secondary care, the voluntary sector, governments and businesses.

Dr Pall worked as a doctor in a thriving inner-city practice, which integrated other practices and is now the largest general practice in the UK: the Modality partnership. She has had many senior roles in commissioning in the UK NHS. She was a board member of Diabetes UK and is chair elect of the International Diabetes Federation Europe, with strong links in healthcare both at the EU and the Council of Europe. As chairperson and MD, she led the formation of Health India Private Limited, a primary healthcare business set up to redesign primary healthcare in India. She was recognised by the Wellcome Trust and asked to contribute to a high-level White Paper on links between India and the UK.

Building on her Indian experience, she worked for a year with HCL, a technology company, as their CMO to develop and scale a primary health care model in India. The first eight clinics are launched and operational.

In her last job she worked for the Indian health insurance company, Max Bupa, in the international development markets where she was responsible for the medical and innovation function in the funding and provision businesses across emerging markets. She helped create an innovative model of low-cost care with Telenor Health in Bangladesh, which included looking closely at the role of micro-insurance. She helped establish clinics in China and Saudi Arabia and supervised clinics in Poland and Hong Kong. She helped create a system of health benefit management in India, Hong Kong and Thailand. In India she worked closely with the government and Max Bupa on RSBY, a low cost-health insurance scheme.

She has been recognised by the Royal College of GPs, having received a special commendation for outstanding contributions to the discipline of primary care.

Elizabeth J. Fowler (USA)
Elizabeth J. Fowler (USA)Vice President for Global Health Policy at Johnson & Johnson

Dr Elizabeth Fowler, Ph D, J D, is currently vice-president for global health policy at Johnson & Johnson, where she focuses on delivery system and payment reform in the USA and healthcare systems reform in emerging markets. Prior to joining Johnson & Johnson, she was special assistant to President Obama on healthcare and economic policy at the National Economic Council.

During the health reform debate in 2009-2010, she was chief health counsel to Senate Finance Committee chair, Senator Max Baucus (D-MT), where she played a critical role in developing the Senate version of the Affordable Care Act. She also played a key role in drafting the 2003 Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement and Modernization Act (MMA).

She has nearly 25 years of experience in health policy and health services research.

She earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Pennsylvania, a Ph D from Johns Hopkins School of Public Health, where her research focused on risk adjustment, and a law degree (J D) from the University of Minnesota. She is admitted to the Maryland bar, the District of Columbia bar and the US Supreme Court. Dr Fowler is a Fellow of the inaugural class of the Health Innovators Fellowship and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.

Dr Ali Hamdulay (SA)
Dr Ali Hamdulay (SA)Chief Executive Officer: Metropolitan Health

Dr Ali Hamdulay, MBChB (UCT), MFamMed (Stellenbosch)(Cum Laude), was recently appointed executive manager: new ventures for the MMI Public Sector Health business and represents Metropolitan Health as a director: Board of Healthcare Funders (BHF).

Having served the healthcare industry for over 18 years in many senior positions, he has developed vast expertise in healthcare business, administration and managed care. As a strategic thinker and leader, he’s successfully researched, planned and led implemented new models of healthcare to improve the health business’ capabilities. In addition, he’s successfully provided leadership and management of large teams to improve business performance.

He has a comprehensive understanding of healthcare ecosystems, identifying critical role-players, markets dynamics, interdependencies and functioning. He’s forged strong relationships across the supply side (health practitioners and facilities), funder community, regulatory bodies and government leaders, and has developed a prominent reputation as an industry thought-leader. He has excellent communication skills and has had considerable media exposure.

After qualifying as a medical doctor at the University of Cape Town in 1998, he worked in the public health sector at Sebokeng Hospital, Gauteng, and Tygerberg Hospital, Western Cape. Two years later, he moved into the private sector, leading the establishment of several successful primary healthcare practices in the Western Cape.

He joined Metropolitan Health Risk Management as clinical advisor in the Clinical Best Practice Unit in 2007. Between 2008 and 2014, he held several executive positions in disease risk management, provider management and the Health Policy & Provider Management Unit before being appointed executive head of clinical risk solutions in 2015. The main objective of the position was to provide strategic direction, leadership and management of the managed care unit responsible for delivering health risk capabilities to enhance value to shareholders, clients and health citizens.

During his tenure in these positions, he has achieved measurable successes including enhanced product development, innovative managed care solutions, business growth, enhanced clinical governance processes, enhanced risk management analytics and value realisation, and competitive tariff negotiations for clients.

Over the past years, the business has entrusted him with several strategic projects and initiatives. These included formulating Metropolitan Health’s position on NHI and heading up the steering committee responsible for dealing with the requirements of the Competition Commission’s inquiry into healthcare.

Ali Hamdulay is passionate about social development and community upliftment and has served in several leadership positions of educational, social and welfare organisations. He has strong leadership qualities and is intensely enthusiastic about making a difference in the health industry.

Dr Karen Freijer (Netherlands)
Dr Karen Freijer (Netherlands)Market Access/Health Economics Manager, Nutricia Advanced Medical Nutrition, The Netherlands

Dr Karen Freijer is market access/health economics manager at Nutricia Advanced Medical Nutrition (NAMN) in the Netherlands. After finishing secondary school at the Nieuw Lyceum in Hilversum (VWO in 1985), she first obtained her Board Secretary licence before starting her college education in nutrition and dietetics at the University of Applied Sciences (HvA, Amsterdam). In 1992 she received her bachelor in health science degree, with specialisation in methodology. After graduation she worked in a number of roles: she was variously a sales representative for Pfizer BV, temporarily in charge of a private dietician practice, and a nutritionist in nutritional food supplement companies. She also undertook several functions within NAMN.

Since 2007 she has specialised in health economics and market access which, in late 2011, led to her in starting her PhD studies in nutrition economics at the University of Maastricht, the Netherlands, alongside her working career at NAMN. She received her Ph D in 2014. Together with three others, she founded a special interest group on nutrition economics, which was officially acknowledged by the International Society for Pharmacoeconomics and Outcomes Research (ISPOR) in 2014 as the first group to focus on nutrition. Dr Freijer is the chairperson of ISPOR. Next to her health economics/market access management function at NAMN, on a global as well as at a BeNeLuX level, and chairing and further developing the ISPOR SIG nutrition economics, she is still affiliated to Maastricht University as a researcher in nutrition economics. She has written multiple international peer-reviewed publications, is an advisor to European nutrition organisations and is a board member of international peer reviewed journals.

Mike Sithole (SA)
Mike Sithole (SA)Portfolio Manager: Old Mutual Wealth

Mike Sithole is a portfolio manager at Old Mutual Wealth Private Client Securities and is based in Johannesburg. He joined the company in 2015. He holds a B Com from the University of South Africa (UNISA), is a CFA charterholder and has over a decade’s experience in the financial services industry.

He began his career at Investec Asset Management as a relationship manager in 2004. He then moved on to become a senior stockbroker at Investec for just under four years.

In 2009, he joined Stanlib as their head of fund research and analysis. Prior to taking up his current position, he was a senior portfolio manager at Ashburton Investments, where he worked with high-net-worth clients.

Dr Stan Moloabi (SA)
Dr Stan Moloabi (SA)Principal Officer: Medshield Medical Scheme

Dr Stan Moloabi is a qualified medical practitioner. He obtained his primary medical degree, MBChB, at what was then the Medical University of Southern Africa (MEDUNSA). His other qualifications are a diploma in business management from Damelin Management School, a certificate in HIV management, and an advanced certificate in private health sector funding from continuing education from Pretoria University. He studied towards a master’s in family medicine, passing his coursework final exams at the University of the Witwatersrand. He is also a member of the Institute of Directors of South Africa (IODSA).

He started his medical career as a general practitioner, successfully running a clinical private practice for 13 years. He joined the corporate sector in August 2005 and is currently the principal officer of Medshield Medical Scheme. Medshield Medical Scheme is the ninth biggest medical scheme registered in South Africa.

Dr Thato Moumakwa (Botswana)
Dr Thato Moumakwa (Botswana)Principal Officer: Pula Medical Aid Fund

Thato Moumakwa graduated from the School of Medicine, University of Manchester (UK), in 1998. Having attained full registration as a medical practitioner in the UK, he returned to serve as a doctor in Botswana for 14 years. In that time, Dr Moumakwa developed a special interest HIV medicine, an emerging pandemic at that point, and was instrumental in the award-winning Debswana HIV/AIDS Programme roll-out, as well as the government of Botswana’s national HIV/AIDS programme roll-out. He received HIV/AIDS training from the University of Witwatersrand. His clinical career culminated in his serving as the chief medical officer of Debswana for about five years.

He received business and leadership training from the Graduate School of Business, University of Cape Town, and the London Business School. He has served in leadership roles in strategy and business improvement. Over the years he has served on numerous boards, including those of Bokamoso Private Hospital, the Botswana Red Cross Society, the Botswana Health Professions Council, the Botswana Government Audit Committee and the Board of Healthcare Funders of Southern Africa (BHF). He is currently the principal officer of a prominent medical aid scheme in Botswana.

Dr Max Price (SA)
Dr Max Price (SA)Vice-Chancellor: University of Cape Town

Dr Max Price took up the post of vice-chancellor of the University of Cape Town in July 2008. From 1996 to 2006, he was dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences at the University of the Witwatersrand.

After obtaining his medical degree from the University of the Witwatersrand, Dr Price was awarded a Rhodes scholarship. He studied philosophy, politics and economics at Oxford. Following clinical work in academic and rural hospitals in South Africa, he took a master’s degree at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, continuing there as a research Fellow in health economics. He joined the Centre for Health Policy at the University of the Witwatersrand in 1988 as a senior researcher and became its director in 1992.

Dr Price’s research has covered the political economy of health in South Africa, health economics, rural health services, health systems research and health science education. He is an Honorary Fellow of the Colleges of Medicine of South Africa in recognition of his leadership role in public health medicine and medical education.

Dr Price is currently chair of the African Research Universities Alliance, and was previously chair and now vice-chair of the Worldwide Universities Network.

Dr. Tihomir Strizrep (Croatia)
Dr. Tihomir Strizrep (Croatia)Former managing director: National Health Insurance Fund Croatia

Dr Tihomir Strizrep is a medical doctor. He studied at the School of Medicine, University of Zagreb, and worked for nine years in the healthcare administration of the Republic of Croatia, holding a variety of positions, including that of director of the National Health Insurance Fund of the Republic of Croatia (2009-2012). He is currently adjunct professor at Effectus Business School and director of the consulting company, Audenta Savjetovanje.

Being a key specialist and decision-maker during the reform and harmonisation of Croatia’s healthcare system according to EU standards, Dr Strizrep was responsible for the implementation of reforms in all major structures of the system, including financing reform and implementation of the DRG system; health services pricing policy; the national strategy for the development of human resources in healthcare, organisation and restruructuring of primary health care and hospitals; development and implementation of a comprehensive IT system, including full implementation of e-prescription; implementation of transparency and anti-corruption decision-making procedures; external reference pricing of medicines (international price comparisons); internal reference pricing of medicines (ATC levels 3 and on); tender-based procurement of medicines and vaccines; claw-back, rebate and cross-product agreements for expensive drugs; and mandatory ethical promotion agreements for pharmaceutical companies.

Dr Strizrep has co-written numerous papers on the subject of healthcare reform, published in national and international journals, including EuroHealth.

He acts as a healthcare reform consultant for the World Bank, World Health Organization, USAID and others in numerous European, central Asian and African countries, including Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bosnia/Herzegovina, Kazakhstan, Kosovo, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Macedonia, Moldova, Montenegro, Serbia, South Africa and Ukraine.

Mr Abdullah Verachia (SA)
Mr Abdullah Verachia (SA)Director for the Centre for Leadership and Dialogue - University of Pretoria's Gordon Institute of Business Science

Abdullah Verachia is director for the Centre for Leadership and Dialogue – University of Pretoria’s Gordon Institute of Business Science. He is an admitted attorney of the High Court of South Africa and holds qualifications from some of South Africa’s leading academic institutions.

He has served as executive: international at Rand Merchant Bank (a division of FirstRand Bank Ltd) as well as on the management board of FirstRand India. Rand Merchant Bank was recently recognised as the 2014 Investment Bank of the Year in Africa by The Banker – Investment Banking Awards.

He is also the chief executive officer of MVA Strategy Consulting – a leading strategy consulting firm. He currently serves as executive chairperson of The Collective Genius and is a director of Education Africa. The Collective Genius is a leading youth strategy consulting firm and has designed a number of flagship youth strategies and projects for leading corporates and government departments. Having worked with over one million young people in the last 10 years, The Collective Genius has a unique vantage point with which to engage and understand the youth market.

Having presented in over 60 cities globally, Abdullah Verachia has been recognised as a leading dealmaker, strategist and thought leader on company competitiveness and strategy and on frontier and emerging markets. He has presented around the world to leading listed firms, international organisations and governments. He has been asked to present at some of the world’s leading institutions including the School of Public and International Affairs at Columbia University in New York, the Said Business School at Oxford University, the OECD in Paris and Casa Asia in Madrid.

He has provided business strategy solutions on behalf of listed and multinational clients in Asia, Africa, Europe and Latin America and has initiated and advised on some of the largest Asian investments into Africa. He also advised numerous South African companies on their internationalisation strategies with various emerging market economies and has an incredible understanding of the internationalisation of listed firms.

He has headed up research, strategy and consulting assignments in an array of sectors including banking, mining, finance, asset management, construction, insurance, legal, audit, FMCG, retail and automotive. In addition, he has headed up consulting assignments on behalf of a number of South African industrial development zones and investment promotion agencies. He has also done work on behalf of leading donor organisations, specifically on the intra-emerging market flows between Asia and Africa.

Dr Clarence Mini (SA)
Dr Clarence Mini (SA)Acting Managing Director: Board of Healthcare Funders of Southern Africa (BHF)

Clarence is currently the Acting Managing Director of the Board of Healthcare Funders of Southern African. He also serves Chairperson of the Clinical Governance and Ex-Gratia Committee and Board member of the Government Employees Medical Scheme. Prior to his current commitments, he also previously successfully fulfilled the following roles:

  • Principal Medical Officer for Port Elizabeth Municipality.
  • National Director for Family Health International
  • National Coordinator and Deputy National Director of Management Sciences for Health
  • Served as co-chairperson of National AIDS Convention of South Africa (NACOSA) – NACOSA wrote the first National HIV/AIDS Plan for South Africa in 1994.
  • Served on the Committee of Inquiry into National Health Insurance (NHI).
  • Served on the Board of Directors for the Hospice Palliative Care Association
  • Executive Director of the MESAB Palliative Care Initiative.
  • Served on the core team that wrote the latest HIV/AIDS National Strategic Plan
  • The past President of the Gauteng Medical Association.
  • Chairperson of the Gauteng Health Facility Accreditation Committee.
  • Board member of the Institute for Human Evolution at Wits University.
  • Trustee of St Andrews school for Girls
  • Served as a member of the Johannesburg Mayoral AIDS Council.
  • Chairman of the Board of Directors for Africa Health Placements
  • Chairperson of the Board of Healthcare Funders of Southern Africa
  • Corporate Affairs Executive for Thebe ya Bophelo Healthcare Administrators.
Dr Arthur Vusimuzi Memela (SA)
Dr Arthur Vusimuzi Memela (SA)Principal Officer: Hosmed Medical Scheme

Dr Vusi Memela has years of extensive experience working within the healthcare industry as well as the public sector. His academic qualifications include an MBChB (MEDUNSA), an LLB (University of the Witwatersrand), an LLM (UNISA), a diploma in management studies and an MBA (coursework completed).

He is well versed with the Medical Schemes Act, its regulations and codes. His work experience includes being registrar of the Health Professions Council of South Africa (HPCSA), and general manager, clinical executive and more recently principal officer of Hosmed Medical Scheme, where he has managed the improvement and implementation of governing policies and procedures in line with best practice.

His key strengths and skills include strategy initiation, development and implementation, effective management of human resources, management of outsourced strategic functions with partner service providers, including industry bodies, regulatory authorities and government departments. Other key areas of responsibility include effective financial management, clinical risk management, marketing and communications, and public relations.

Nathaniel Otoo (Ghana)
Nathaniel Otoo (Ghana)Former CEO of National Health Insurance Authority

Nathaniel Otoo worked for over 10 years with Ghana’s National Health Insurance Authority. He eventually rose to become the CEO of the Authority, a position he held until he resigned in February 2017. His previous work experience spans the social security, manufacturing and trade promotion sectors.

Nathaniel is a founding member of the Joint Learning Network for UHC, and became the network’s first convener in 2013, a position he held for 2 years. Nathaniel is currently an independent consultant and runs his own firm Wazuri Consulting. He holds a bachelors’ degree in law from the University of Ghana and a masters’ degree in International Relations from the International University of Japan.

Dr Rufaro Richard Chatora (Tanzania)
Dr Rufaro Richard Chatora (Tanzania)WHO Representative

Prior to his arrival in South Africa in August 2016, Dr Rufaro Chatora served as WHO representative in Tanzania. This entailed representing the RD and DG in the country, as well as being the head of the office. He managed the WHO biennial programme of work from planning, to implementation, to monitoring and evaluation.

Between 2000 and 2010 he served as director in different divisions of the Tanzania/Kenya regional office. In his capacity as director for health systems, he produced guidelines for the development of health policy, tools for assessing the operationality of district health systems and a report on the migration of human resources.

As director for non-communicable diseases, he was responsible for a STEPS survey undertaken in 18 countries, which led to the debate around and recognition of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) as a public health problem in Africa. Through advocacy, he contributed to 32 countries’ ratifying of the FCTC.

In his capacity as director for AIDS, TB and malaria (ATM), Dr Chatora contributed towards the reorganisation of the regional office to include the creation of inter-country support teams, of which ATM staff form the largest component. This improved the speed of response to country calls for support.

Dr Chatora started his career in 1981 in his home country of Tanzania. When he left in 1996, he was principal secretary in the Ministry of Health. His responsibilities entailed management of all health resources and coordination of all preventive and curative health programmes and partners, which included development of health legislation. He also represented the government on national and international bodies.

He has a medical background with postgraduate qualifications in public health and health economics.

Kudzai Chigiji (Zimbabwe)
Kudzai Chigiji (Zimbabwe)Consulting Actuary

Kudzai Chigiji is a consulting actuary from Zimbabwe, currently working for WesBank Group in South Africa as its Head of Strategic Analytics and Research. Her experience spans life insurance, management consulting, healthcare consulting, social security development, banking and loyalty programmes. She is currently pursuing a master’s degree in development finance to bring the fundamentals of finance and economics closer to the needs of developing African countries.

Using her experience across several sectors has allowed her to tap into the cross-industrial benefits of closer collaborations. She seeks to develop solutions that meet the holistic needs of communities to foster sustainable development.

She has spoken at several conferences in the past few years, including the last two Actuarial Society of South Africa conventions, the International Congress of Actuaries, the Singapore Actuarial Health and Retirement Conference in 2016, the 2016 IAA Joint Colloquium held in St John’s, Newfoundland, and two symposiums for the Government Employees’ Medical Scheme.

She currently volunteers across several committees within the Actuarial Society of South Africa, Actuarial Society of Zimbabwe, International Association of Consulting Actuaries and the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries. She is the Africa representative on the International Association of Consulting Actuaries’ committee. She seeks to find new areas where the actuarial profession can introduce its expertise.

Nontobeko M Ntsinde (SA)
Nontobeko M Ntsinde (SA)Admitted Attorney and Notary Public

Nontobeko M Msinde is an admitted attorney and notary public. Her qualifications include a Baccalareus Procurationis from the University of Fort Hare. She practised in the Eastern Cape for six years as a conveyancer before the current political dispensation. She has 10 years’ experience as an attorney in private practice, focusing on property law, notarial work and High Court commercial litigation.

In 1994, having completed her MBA at Wits Business School, she started her career in investment banking and finance, working for among others FirstCorp Merchant Bank, Standard and Corporate Merchant Bank, the Southern Africa Enterprise Development Fund and the Industrial Development Corporation.

Her career as corporate governance specialist began in 2001 when she was appointed to the board of the South African National Roads Agency (SANRAL) and continues to date, more than 15 years later.

Her experience has been mainly in different roles in finance and consulting and includes the following areas: private equity, SMEs and economic infrastructure.

Her current board positions include being a trustee of the Government Employees’ Medical Scheme (GEMS) and a member of the University of KwaZulu-Natal Council. Past positions include being a director of the South African Institute of Professional Accountants (SAIPA), the South African Dental Association (SADA), the Tshwane Economic Development Agency (TEDA), and the section 21 company, Omukunda Development Network.

Dr Rajesh Patel (SA)
Dr Rajesh Patel (SA)Head of the Benefit and Risk Department at the Board of Healthcare Funders (BHF)

Dr Rajesh Patel is currently head of the benefit and risk department at the Board of Healthcare Funders (BHF).

Prior to that, he worked as a family physician from 1987 to 1995. After leaving private practice he joined the medical aid industry. His roles in the industry have included medical advisor, scheme manager and clinical risk manager. Prior to joining the BHF in 2005, he spent two and a half years in the pharmaceutical industry. His special interests are quality assurance, value-based medicine and the application of public health principles in health risk management in the private sector.

He is a member of the health data ministerial advisory committee. Prior to this, he was a non-executive director of the Council for Health Service Accreditation of Southern Africa (COHSASA) and Health Quality Assessment (HQA), as well as a former chairman of the clinical review committee of HQA.

Adv. Lekgoa (Andy) Mothibi (SA)
Adv. Lekgoa (Andy) Mothibi (SA)Head of the Special Investigating Unit (SIU)

Advocate Andy Mothibi started his career as public prosecutor in the Magistrate’s and Regional Courts. He also served on the bench as a magistrate in the Johannesburg and Soweto Magistrate’s Courts.

He was appointed head: employee relations at the then Department of Finance in 1995. He was part of the project that led to the establishment of the South African Revenue Service (SARS). At SARS he also served as head of corporate legal services and head of governance.

In 2005 he was appointed head of compliance at South African Airways (SAA). After completing the implementation of SAA’s enterprise and compliance risk management framework, he was appointed senior manager: enterprise risk management at Nedbank in 2007. Within six months he became general manager: group operational risk management. After successfully completing the implementation of the Basel II Operational Risk Management Framework (Basel II ORMF), in 2012 he was appointed head of operational risk for Standard Bank of South Africa. After successful implementation of Basel II ORMF there he became head: Standard Bank group operational risk management. Basel II ORMF implementation entailed assessing operational risks, which included the development of anti-fraud and anti-money laundering scenarios.

In October 2013 he was appointed as an executive director at Medscheme Holdings, a subsidiary of AfroCentric Health. His role at Medscheme was equivalent to that of a chief risk officer, which provided for wider career growth. The role included leading group legal services, governance, risk and compliance. He was also responsible for the Medscheme Road Accident Fund business unit. At AfroCentric Group he championed the successful implementation of the AfroCentric enterprise risk management framework. One of the key initiatives was the reorganisation of the group forensic investigations business unit, which improved forensic investigations capability and recoveries.

On 1 May 2016, he was appointed head of the Special Investigating Unit (SIU) by the president of South Africa.

Dr Nthabiseng Legoete (SA)
Dr Nthabiseng Legoete (SA)Founder and CEO at Quali Health

Dr Nthabiseng Legoete holds an MB ChB and an MBA. She is a medical practitioner who is passionate about improving access to primary healthcare. She has a vision that, if realised, will make quality primary healthcare affordable for all global citizens in emerging markets.

She founded Quali Health in May 2016. This organisation provides affordable high-quality healthcare services to the disenfranchised communities of South Africa. This network of clinics currently services 500 patients a day.

She has spent the last 10 years navigating the private health sector, firstly as a medical advisor and product manager in the pharmaceutical division of Roche and also as a partner in a medical practice that manages three emergency units in South Africa. Her main role was that of clinical director. She also has experience in the sub-acute environment and sees opportunities in it to curb exorbitant and often unnecessary private healthcare costs.

She completed her MBA through the Gordon Institute of Business Science. Her research project entitled ‘Factors that influence the nonurgent use of emergency departments in the South African private healthcare sector’ seeks to aid in the development of divergent strategies for these patients.

Geoffrey Mwangi (Kenya)
Geoffrey Mwangi (Kenya)CEO/board secretary of National Hospital Insurance Fund

Geoffrey Mwangi is the CEO/board secretary of National Hospital Insurance Fund, a Kenyan state corporation with the mandate to provide affordable social health insurance to Kenyan residents.

Prior to being appointed CEO in November 2016, he was acting CEO and director: finance and investments. In the latter role, he was faced with two delicate assignments: designing a strategic healthcare purchasing mechanism and rolling out an outpatient package under the national scheme previously available under the civil servants’ scheme.

His skills matrix includes knowledge of healthcare financing, provider payment mechanisms, financial accounting, financial planning, cash flow management, asset management, corporate financial affairs, process flow design, behavioural finance and public finance.

He is a certified public accountant and a member of the Institute of Certified Public Accountants of Kenya (ICPAK) with 15 years’ post-qualification experience. He has extensive knowledge of financial planning and has valuable experience in healthcare financing strategies applied globally.

He was awarded a Master of Commerce by the School of Commerce and Management, Strathmore University, where he specialised in behavioural finance theory. His publications include Behavioural factors influencing investment decisions in the Kenyan property market, which appeared in the Afro-Asian Journal of Finance & Accounting in 2014.

He also holds a Bachelor of Science in business administration accounting from the United States International University, where he specialised in accounting systems and processes.

Anthony Norton (SA)
Anthony Norton (SA)Founder and Director of Nortons Inc

Anthony Norton holds a BA LLB (cum laude) from the University of the Witwatersrand and an MLit (Oxon).

Prior to co-founding Nortons Inc., he was head of the competition law department at Webber Wentzel. His principal areas of practice are South African and African competition law and competition litigation, as well as white-collar crime, general litigation and regulatory advice. He was the first South African competition law practitioner to appear before the South African Competition Appeal Court.

He has experience in merger notifications, merger interventions and applications for advisory opinions in relation to mergers and acquisitions. He has also provided advice to clients in respect of prohibited practices, corporate leniency applications, horizontal and vertical restrictive practices, abuses of dominant position, applications for exemption and interim relief as well as in relation to the new criminal provisions under the South African Competition Act. His expertise in competition law is highly regarded and he has advised clients on a number of seminal competition law matters.

Recent merger notifications include representing Western Digital in respect of its global acquisition of SanDisk Corporation and the JSE-listed Mpact Limited in respect of its acquisition of Remade Holdings.

He advised Sasol Polymers, a division of Sasol Chemical Industries Limited, in the most important excessive pricing case before the South African Competition Tribunal and the Competition Appeal Court. This was in relation to two complaints regarding the excessive domestic pricing of propylene and polypropylene, which the Competition Commission had referred to the Competition Tribunal. The Competition Appeal Court found in favour of Sasol Polymers and the Constitutional Court declined to hear the Commission’s application for leave to appeal.

Anthony Norton currently represents Netcare Limited in relation to the Competition Commission’s market inquiry into private healthcare, as well as Pick n Pay Retailers (Pty) Ltd in relation to its retail grocery market inquiry. Recent competition/antitrust cases include: Netcare’s acquisition of the Community Healthcare Group, Medicross and Primecure as well as Netcare’s opposition to the attempt by Medi-Clinic to acquire a minority stake in Afrox Healthcare.

Anthony Norton has been recognised as a leader in the field of competition and antitrust, and has received a number of local and international accolades in this regard.

Neo Khauoe
Neo KhauoePrincipal Officer: Sizwe Medical Fund

Neo Khauoe’s qualifications include a Dip Nursing (General, Psychiatry, and Midwifery), Dip HR, BTech HRM, MAP, MBA and BTh. She began her career as a nurse at Baragwanath Hospital, where she excelled before moving into the medical schemes industry 22 years ago. She started as a customer services consultant at Medscheme and moved up the ranks, occupying several management positions in CRM, HR, IR, and training and provider relationship management, among others.

She later went on to work as a client relationship manager at Alexander Forbes and Sizwe Medical Services, where she was instrumental in improving customer relations and query resolution at both organisations. She managed diverse teams and supported brokers who were involved with different schemes.

When she moved to Metropolitan Health in 2006, she was tasked with the challenging role of managing the POLMED business unit as its scheme executive. Her focus was on people management, client relations, customer services and improvement of financial and operational challenges. Her ability to communicate, operate and interact at different levels was key to her success in building productive and coherent teams.

POLMED business unit experienced improvements and member satisfaction, which prompted the scheme to request her appointment as general manager in 2009 because of her ability to co-ordinate and establish high-performing teams. It was during this time that she actively involved different stakeholders at SAPS and POLMED, including health risk managers, service providers and members, in scheme-related matters. Member education and communication were enhanced with high participation at different levels. Member voice and fair practice have always been among her priorities.

In 2014 she spearheaded the takeover of the strategic management of Sizwe Medical Fund out of curatorship. Thanks to her proven track record of good governance, ensuring effective and efficient functioning organisations, member participation and stakeholder management, the scheme is now stable with a good financial outlook. It has imposed the lowest contribution increases in the market since 2015 and has a high solvency ratio coupled with rich benefits.

Her various qualifications have honed her ability to build high-performing organisations. She has trained, developed, coached and mentored many in and outside the medical schemes industry and continues to do so. She has been featured in many publications and has commented on issues of interest while providing input at different forums that deal with changes in the industry.

Gregory Pratt (SA)
Gregory Pratt (SA)Medical Advisor on Healthcare Forensics: Medscheme

Gregory Pratt qualified as a general practitioner in 1995 at Pretoria University and after 10 years in private practice completed an MBA and then joined Medscheme, providing advisory services to a number of its corporate and open schemes. He has been involved with forensic investigations for the schemes in the Medscheme stable since 2007 and has pursued this interest over the last decade. He has been closely involved with GEMS since 2008 across many of its divisions and has served on its fraud forum since its inception.

He joined Universal Healthcare in 2012 and helped develop the strategic managed care unit, which provided actuarial and clinical analyses to GEMS, until returning to Medscheme in October 2016. Forensic investigation has always intrigued him and spurred him on to qualify as a certified fraud examiner through a US institution. He is passionate about eradicating fraud in the healthcare industry and is continually looking for collaborative ways to achieve this.

Dr Grant Rex (SA)
Dr Grant Rex (SA)Chief Executive Officer at Improved Clinical Pathway Services

Dr Grant Rex qualified with an MB BCh from the University of the Witwatersrand in 1987 and went on to obtain a B Soc Sci (Hons) from UND and an SMP from Henley (UK). He went into clinical management at Alexandra University Clinic, where he was general manager of the Institute of Urban Primary Healthcare; this was followed by a stint as superintendent at Baragwanath Hospital before joining Life Healthcare as a hospital manger, regional manager and eventually managing director of its overseas operations in the UK. He then joined Care UK as head of its secondary care hospital division, where he was exposed to the measurement of clinical outcomes or clinical quality assurance and the development of standardised care pathways based on this.

In 2013 he returned to South Africa where he started the first ‘ value-based’ clinical network called Improved Clinical Pathway Services (ICPS), offering quality controlled joint replacement to the private medical aid industry as well as government. 

Dr Iain Barton (SA)
Dr Iain Barton (SA)Group Business Development Executive - Healthcare Imperial Logistics

Dr Iain Barton is a leading expert in developing and implementing best practice supply chain functions in global health.

A committed South African, he is a medical doctor with 10 years clinical practice and 20 years in supply chain management. Dr Barton specialises in pharmaceutical supply chain solution design and market-shaping start-ups.

He is group strategy executive: healthcare for Imperial Logistics, coordinating operations across all of Imperial’s healthcare businesses. Imperial is Africa’s largest logistics company and its healthcare operations deliver more than 350 million patient packs of medicine each year.

Dr Barton was responsible for developing the concept of regional distribution centres to support the scale-up of PEPFAR, which provides life-saving drugs and commodities for more than six million HIV patients in 17 countries across Africa. Other innovations developed under his leadership include Unjani Clinics, Warehouse-in-a-Box, Clinic-in-a-Box and Lulama Pharmacies.

He currently serves on the advisory boards of Merck for Mothers, South Africa’s Public Health Enhancement Fund and People That Deliver.

Dr Odwa Mazwai (SA)
Dr Odwa Mazwai (SA) Group Functional Specialist: GEMS Fund Management

Dr Odwa Mazwai is currently group functional specialist: GEMS Fund Management, GEMS Managed Care, Medscheme Holdings. He has extensive clinical experience and integrates this with public health, health economics and health policy knowledge. He qualified with an MB ChB from Walter Sisulu (formerly UNITRA) Medical School. He served as a medical officer in the public sector in Gauteng, where he earned not only his Diploma in Anaesthesiology, but also gained a keen understanding of the need for healthcare reform in this country.

His passion for equitable and sustainable healthcare found him working in the national Department of Health as a technical advisor in the office of the director-general. Here, he provided input on health policy planning to assist various directorates align their strategy to conform to proposed NHI initiatives.

He joined Medscheme as a senior specialist in provider networks with a specific focus on the Government Employees’ Medical Scheme (GEMS). As an interface between GEMS and Medscheme, his roles include the facilitation of the creation of a GEMS hospital network, the continued contracting of family practitioners and specialists into GEMS networks, and maintaining and deepening relationships between GEMS and other service providers.

As part of the healthcare provider relations multidisciplinary team, his other responsibilities include creating strong ties with most departments in the company, particularly GEMS clinical risk management, clinical fund management, HIU, actuarial, legal, health policy unit, managed care department and assessing.

Dr Brian Ruff (SA)
Dr Brian Ruff (SA)Chief Executive Officer: PPO Serve Integrated Clinical Consortia

Dr Brian Ruff holds an MB BCh (Wits 1983); FCP (SA 2002); Rheumatology, D HM E FP (UCT 2002) and CPMD (Wits 2006). He is a physician, rheumatologist and health economist. He is currently CEO of PPO Serve (Professional Provider Organisation Services), a position he has held since March 2015.

PPO Serve is a healthcare management company that helps clinicians organise themselves into integrated teams, called Integrated Clinical Consortia™. It is supported by the Foundation of Professional Development and Stone3 Venture Technologies.

Integrated Clinical Consortia are multidisciplinary teams owned by the working clinicians. They deliver healthcare of high value to patients – good quality on a sustainable basis. PPO Serve provides a complete support infrastructure including a tailor-made toolkit to form and manage the consortium along with data analytics and a clinical workflow health IT solution – the Intelligent Care System for patient management. Integrated Clinical Consortia take many forms, including for general population management; for HIV and other chronic disease management; for maternity care and for surgical episodes. Demonstration projects are under way.

PPO Serve’s purpose stems from a recognition that South Africa’s healthcare system is in crisis; people can no longer afford their high medical scheme premiums. These are the result of a lack of teamwork, which leads to fragmented care with gaps in needed treatment. Because of this, problems don’t get fully resolved. Integrated Clinical Consortia team clinicians provide high-value patient-centred care to populations, thus reducing overall healthcare costs with high levels of patient and clinician satisfaction.

Until March 2015, Brian was head of strategy at Discovery Health. He managed various divisions including risk intelligence which did innovative clinical data and case mix analytics; and the integrated care unit, which drove supply side reform. His work included the development of a macro-economic model of the South African private healthcare sector.

He headed up a technical task team for provincial healthcare services during the transition from apartheid to democracy. The focus was on service reconfiguration to provide effective and equitable care for South Africans.

Before that he was a clinician in public sector hospitals and at Alexandra Clinic. He has also worked for the NHS in London.


Dr Kwinda Munyadziwa (SA)
Dr Kwinda Munyadziwa (SA)Acting Chief Operating Officer: Health Professions Council of South Africa

Dr Kwinda Munyadziwa was born and raised in Dzumbama, Mutale Local Municipality, in Vhembe District (Limpopo), where he received his primary and secondary education. He went on to obtain, among other qualifications, a Bachelor of Science from the University of Venda, a Bachelor of Medicine and Surgery from the University of Natal, a Certificate in Advanced Health Management from FPD/Yale University and a MMed (Family Medicine from the University of Limpopo. He received his MSc Med (Bioethics and Health Law) from the University of the Witwatersrand in 2016.

Further to holding a number of positions in the Department of Health, he is currently acting chief operations officer of the Health Professions Council of South Africa (HSPCA), a position he has held since June last year. He holds a number of professional leadership positions with industry bodies such as the South African Medical Association and the Aeromedical Committee of the Civil Aviation Authority. His many achievements/awards include his being named South Africa’s Rural Doctor of the Year 2008 by the Rural Doctors Association of South Africa and the Best Clinical Manager for Vhembe District for the 2007/8 financial year.

Barry Childs
Barry ChildsJoint Chief Executive Officer: Insight Actuaries and Consultants

Barry Childs is joint CEO of Insight Actuaries & Consultants. He is a Fellow of the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries with a postgraduate diploma in health economics. He is passionate about healthcare and provides advice to a wide range of healthcare role-players, including NGOs, government agencies, healthcare providers and pharmaceutical companies, medical schemes and their administrators and managed care organisations, as well as wellness and loyalty programmes.

Geraldine Bartlett (SA)
Geraldine Bartlett (SA)Managing Director: Care Management

Geraldine Bartlett holds an M Pharm (Cum Laude). She is the managing director of Universal Care (Pty) Ltd, an accredited managed care organisation that is a wholly owned subsidiary of Universal Healthcare (Pty) Ltd. She is responsible for the overall management of the managed care function, which includes hospital benefit management, pharmacy benefit management, disease management, oncology management, dental benefit management and provider network management.

A pharmacist by qualification, she has a master’s degree in pharmacy and over 30 years’ experience in managed care at senior management and executive level within the medical schemes industry. She has been responsible for pioneering a number of managed care initiatives in South Africa, such as medicine formularies, chronic medicine management programmes, medicine reference pricing and disease management programmes. She has presented on managed care both internationally and locally.

Hardy Ncube (SA)
Hardy Ncube (SA)Nedbank Insurance Manager: Business Development, Research & Innovation

Hardy Ncube holds an MBL, BCom, FCII and a diploma in professional consciousness coaching. He is currently working on his PhD through the University of the Witwatersrand.

He has over 19 years of working experience in strategic roles in various financial institutions. These roles include business development, research and innovation, product development and product management, strategic planning and outsource partner oversight management. He has also worked as an internal coach and external coach (i.e. business, leadership and personal coaching).

Dr Hleli Nhlapo
Dr Hleli NhlapoManaging Director: DENIS

Dr Hleli Nhlapo qualified with a BChD from MEDUNSA in July 1991. He obtained a postgraduate diploma in forensic dentistry and MSc Dent Sc (Forensic Dentistry) from Stellenbosch University in 1999 and 2001, respectively.

He is registered with the HPCSA as a general dental practitioner and is a member of the South African Dental Association (SADA). He served as a director of Oralnet from 1998 until January 2005 and as an executive member of the South African Medical and Dental Practitioners Association (SAMDP) from 1996 to 2001.

He is currently managing director of the medical schemes division at Dental Information (Pty) Ltd, a position he has held since January 2005. He is an executive of EOH’s health business unit and, since October 2014, has also served as chairman of the HFMU within BHF.

He is a director and board member of BHF since July 2016.

He practised as a dental surgeon for 14 years before joining DENIS in January 2005. He has attended various postgraduate courses within the dental specialties. He served as dental advisor for Medscheme (1998-2004), Managed Health Systems (2002-2004) and a local area manager for Bankmed under MHS. He was part of the SAMDP’s yearly tariff increase negotiation team with the then RAMS, and was also involved in the negotiations with the Dental Technicians Council that made it possible for dental technicians to claim directly from medical aid schemes. He is an annual invitee of the University of the Western Cape’s Dental Faculty to speak to their final-year students on the subject of private healthcare funding in South Africa.

Paresh Prema (SA)
Paresh Prema (SA)General Manager:Benefits Management at CMS

Paresh Prema is currently general manager of the benefits management unit at the CMS responsible for the registration of schemes’ rules, contributions and benefits. He is a fellow of the Actuarial Society of South Africa and a member of the society’s healthcare committee. Prior to joining the CMS, he was part of the actuarial division of one of the large administrators. He has experience in the field of employee benefits and consulting.

Nicolas Garcia
Nicolas GarciaOEM Modules Morpho South Africa: Regional Director of Sales

Nicolas Garcia started his career in France as an information technology specialist when floppy disks were still in use, many moons ago.

In 2002, he moved to South Africa to work for the French Embassy – Trade Commission as the IT manager for southern Africa operations for two years. He was subsequently introduced to access control and biometrics in 2004 when he was appointed by OT-Morpho – then called SAGEM South Africa. SAGEM was a France-based company and world leader in biometrics and access control and this was the first time they were penetrating the African market.

Over the past 13 years, he has occupied key positions such as technical manager, sales and operations manager, sales and marketing director and business unit manager; he is currently the regional director of sales for sub-Saharan Africa at OT-Morpho, a position he has held for the past three years.

He draws his legitimacy as an expert in his field from his involvement in information technology, and biometrics in particular, over the past decade. He currently oversees all biometric terminal sales activity in sub-Saharan Africa, including but not limited to South Africa, Botswana, Kenya, Tanzania, Namibia, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

Paul Midlane
Paul MidlaneGeneral manager: healthcare forensics for Medscheme Holdings

Paul Midlane holds an LLB degree and is currently the general manager: healthcare forensics for Medscheme Holdings, the first position of this kind in the country. He was admitted as a practising attorney in September 2005, specialising in commercial and civil litigation. He joined the AfroCentric Group in April 2010 where he started as a legal advisor, before being promoted to senior legal manager in 2012 and finally to general manager of LGRC in 2014.

He identified healthcare forensics as a key area that could make a substantial impact on the funding industry and became focused on raising awareness of the financial risks posed by fraud, waste and abuse in healthcare claims. He has since established the largest healthcare forensic unit in South Africa and has been permanently dedicated to forensics since September 2016. He has appeared on a variety of TV shows, written many articles on healthcare fraud, waste and abuse and presented on the subject at local and international conferences. 

Dr Sipho Kabane (SA)
Dr Sipho Kabane (SA)CMS Acting Registrar

Dr Sipho Kabane holds a PhD in health systems from the University of Pretoria and an MPhil in economic policy from the University of Stellenbosch. He has extensive experience in the regulation of the medical schemes industry. He is currently senior strategist with the Council for Medical Schemes (CMS), a position he has held since July 2016. He is responsible for the overall management of strategic projects and clinical units, the development and review of the prescribed minimum benefits, definition and code of conduct, and the management of the liaison between CMS and the national Department of Health on key policy issues such as the national health insurance and health market inquiry. He is a key player in the development of CMS strategy and advisor to the council on important policy development.

He has an outstanding record in managing province-wide health service provision with a focus on quality, reform and continuous improvement. He is skilled in managing diverse and multidisciplinary teams as well as the financial and operational aspects of health departments. He is experienced in building and communicating strategy and vision, and has a strong understanding of economics and its effect on health services. He is also an active and productive member of numerous committees contributing to the health and well-being of communities and individuals.

Tryphine Zulu
Tryphine ZuluAdvanced clinical risk specialist at Medscheme Holdings

Tryphine Zulu holds a bachelor of pharmacy degree and an MSc (Med) in pharmacotherapy. In addition, she holds a master’s in public health, specialising in health economics. She is currently an advanced clinical risk specialist at Medscheme Holdings. This role draws heavily on her educational background in health economics, health policy, health systems, universal health coverage, economic evaluation and her prior experience as a healthcare practitioner and public health researcher.

She previously worked as a consultant for the Health and Social Development Directorate of the National Treasury in the Public Finance Division before moving to the national Department of Health, where she worked as coordinator of two of the NHI workstreams. She has also worked as a pharmacist in both the private and public sectors in South Africa, as a researcher at the Health Sciences Research Council and an analyst at the Clinton Health Access Initiative. She is a passionate scholar of public health and health economics and is currently pursuing a PhD in health economics at the University of Cape Town. Her research focuses on inequality, inequity and effective coverage of health services in relation to non-communicable diseases.


Vishal Brijlal (SA)
Vishal Brijlal (SA)NHI Coordinator – National Department of Health

Vishal Brijlal trained as a health economist and has over 20 years of experience in various aspects of health and financing policy in many countries, including South Africa and India. After completing his postgraduate studies at the University of Durban-Westville (now the University of KZN), he joined the Health Economics and Financing Unit at the Centre for Health Policy (University of the Witwatersrand). In 1998, he left to join the Health Economics and Finance Directorate at the national Department of Health (NDOH)as a deputy director. In 1999, he was appointed to the post of director: health financing and economics. After leaving the NDOH in late 2003, he joined the Board of Healthcare Funders (BHF) as executive for research and advocacy. In 2006 he was appointed country director for the CHAI programme in India. He was instrumental in the introduction and implementation of a paediatric ART programme in partnership with the National AIDS Control Organisation (NACO). In 2008, he established the CHAI programme in South Africa and currently serves as country director. In 2012, he was seconded to the office of the director general: health at the NDOH as technical advisor on health financing and national health insurance (NHI). In December 2015, he was appointed to lead Workstream 4: The Future of Medical Schemes, one of the six NHI workstreams. In May 2016, the Minister of Health appointed him NHI coordinator.

Xolile Bhengu
Xolile BhenguCommunications and public affairs manager for IPASA

Xolile Bhengu is communications and public affairs manager for the Innovative Pharmaceutical Association of South Africa (IPASA), a position she has held since January 2015.

She holds a national diploma in journalism from the Durban University of Technology (former ML Sultan Technikon) and more recently acquired a certificate on programme for management development from the Gordon Institute of Business Science. She worked as a journalist for several years, including at the BDFM Group (Financial Mail), the Times Media Group (The Herald & Weekend Post (Port Elizabeth), The Times/Sunday Times (Johannesburg)) and Independent Newspapers (the Sunday Tribune, Daily News and Isolezwe (KwaZulu-Natal)). She has won several journalism awards including Newcomer of the Year in Citadel’s annual Words on Money Financial Journalism Awards (2008) and Discovery Health Journalism Awards’ Best Health Economics Journalism (2012).

Prior to joining IPASA she was a corporate communications officer for the National Empowerment Fund. Her other experience includes working for First National Bank and the Department of Human Settlements.

Jaap Kugel (SA)
Jaap Kugel (SA)CMS Chief Information Officer

Jaap Kugel holds a master’s degree in technology and is currently chief information officer (CIO) at the Council for Medical Schemes (CMS). He is passionate about investigating and implementing innovative information technology enablers to meet business requirements.

Prior to joining the CMS, he was employed by the national Department of Health from 1992 to 2000. During this time, he was responsible for handling the budgets, IT and procurement as well as allocation and management of donor funds and donor projects for the various directorates and clusters he worked under. While at the department he was involved in conceptualising ICT-driven solutions to improve administrative efficiencies. His keen interest in ICT and attendance of various ICT courses culminated in his being appointed IT manager of the CMS.

He joined the CMS in June 2000 and was primarily tasked with setting up the council’s IT infrastructure and developing custom software applications. He was responsible for conceptualising and pinning the business requirements for several custom applications and for project managing the development of these applications. These applications included the CMS accreditation, complaints and financial return systems, to name a few.

He is a member of the executive management committee, risk management committee and IT steering committee of the CMS. He was recently appointed chair of the IT advisory group (ITAG) of the medical schemes industry, responsible for coordinating all IT-related developments and standards. He is currently tasked with establishing the beneficiary registry of all funded patients in South Africa.

Zandile Moloi (SA)
Zandile Moloi (SA)Strategy support manager at GEMS

Upon obtaining a BCom degree at the University of Pretoria, Zandile Moloi completed her honours at Vega School of Brand Leadership and used her marketing and international business management experience to carve a career. She worked at a German multinational and went on to garner experience across prominent sectors including premium retail brand, Woolworths, and financial services company, Discovery Holdings. She is currently in the office of the principal officer as a strategy support manager at South Africa’s largest closed medical scheme, the Government Employees’ Medical Scheme (GEMS), where she is partly responsible for embedding the new five-year scheme strategy.

She bolsters her extensive corporate and public sector experience with postgraduate qualifications conferred by her alma mater, UP’s Gordon Institute of Business Science (GIBS). She subscribes to a modern pedagogy of hermeneutics, applying systems thinking in developing and integrating solutions to build holistic, equitable and sustainable capital within the healthcare system. She believes that smart, energetic and creative young women like her are the alchemists needed to spearhead disruptive systemic change for the greater good.

She enjoys synthesising new relationships between previously unrelated aspects of work and adopts a collaborative approach to facilitate Greenfield thinking. Her interests lie in philosophy, holistic health and wellness, strategy, innovation, sustainable leadership and women development, as she seeks to inspire young girls from disadvantaged backgrounds.

Mariska Vente-van Staden (SA)
Mariska Vente-van Staden (SA)Business Development Manager for long-term strategic partnerships at Philips Health Systems Southern Africa

Mariska Vente-van Staden is currently a business development manager for long-term strategic partnerships at Philips Health Systems Southern Africa. This role has a solid focus on primary healthcare and mother and childcare.

Coming from a clinical engineering background she believes in having a strong technical and clinical approach to building better and sustainable solutions. With a greenbelt in six sigma process and quality improvements within the health system, this is the low-hanging fruit required to build lasting partnerships with government and non-government institutions.

She has won big with the WHO in Namibia for supplying medical equipment, services and training to the Program for Accelerating the Reduction of Maternal & Child Mortality (PARMaCM) which was founded by first lady, Ms Pohamba. Furthermore she was the leader of a project undertaken with the University of Stellenbosch and Tygerberg Hospital to co-develop emergency maternal care solutions for the hospital.

With her strong focus on maternal, neonatal and child care, she concluded a quality improvement programme and research study which took place in three rural hospitals in Mozambique. She and her team tested a methodology for introducing a package of interventions to improve patient safety and detect clinical complications early. Philips is scaling this up to a national programme.