As part of a national effort to recognise the collective contributions and strengthen the visibility of the country’s independent primary care practitioners, the Alliance of South African Independent Practitioners Association (ASAIPA) is convening an unprecedented multidisciplinary five-category National Medical Awards (NMA) initiative based on peer nominations.

Culmination will be an awards ceremony scheduled to take place in Johannesburg in November.

“What we have seen in the Health Market Inquiry Provisional Report  where it indicates that solo practices should be phased out and that practitioners should be employed, has just served to confirm that now, more than ever, independent primary healthcare practitioners in private practice need to be recognised and promoted,” ASAIPA CEO, Henru Krüger, noted when explaining the motivation behind the awards project.

The ASAIPA National Medical Awards has been created as an honorary platform for Independent Private Health Practitioners to put their best foot forward and to be selected as the national “Top Practitioner” in their respective categories and medical fields.

“We are therefore delighted to introduce you to the ASAIPA National Medical Awards, proudly brought to you by Granadilla Media and unique in their own right to recognise and honour the independent South African medical professionals for their hard work and dedication that makes them the champions of independent private practice,” Kruger added.

The ASAIPA National Medical Awards represent a great opportunity for recognising those who are devoted to doing their very best in their professional category: “We are not in the business of putting individuals and practices up for scrutiny for what they are lacking, but rather for what they offer. This grants every practitioner the opportunity to be awarded in their respective areas of expertise.”

Although most private practitioners remain independent, Krüger stressed that it was now time for them to start considering being part of a multidisciplinary group and referral network that can coordinate care, better patient care and act as a collective in dealing with matters of mutual importance: “The nationalization of healthcare already underway is going to bring even more challenges, making it now more important than ever to unite around primary care.”

To this end, in addition to 14 major independent family practitioner groups (IPAs) around the country, representative bodies such as the SA Society of Physiotherapy, SA Association of Audiologists, and Biokinetics Association SA have already become associated with ASAIPA, with the Occupational Therapy Association SA to follow soon.

“Without a doubt these Awards will soon be the industry’s most sought after accolade,” ASAIPA CEO, Dr Unben Pillay, predicted when commenting on the initiative.

 *Further details available at  http://asaipa.co.za/about/national-medical-awards/ or at tel no 012 348 8855