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National Health Act, 2003 (Act No. 61 of 2003)

Chapter 10 : Office of Health Standards Compliance, Board, Inspections and Environmental Health Investigations, Health Officers and Inspectors, Complaints and Appeal Procedures

79. Functions of Office


(1) The Office must—
(a) advise the Minister on matters relating to the determination of norms and  standards to be prescribed for the national health system and the review of such norms and standards;
(b) inspect and certify health establishments as compliant or non-compliant with prescribed norms and standards or, where appropriate and necessary, withdraw such certification;
(c) investigate complaints relating to breaches of prescribed norms and standards;
(d) monitor indicators of risk as an early warning system relating to serious breaches of norms and standards and report any breaches to the Minister without delay;
(e) identify areas and make recommendations for intervention by a national or provincial department of health, a health department of a municipality or health establishment, where it is necessary, to ensure compliance with prescribed norms and standards;
(f) publish information relating to prescribed norms and standards through the media and, where appropriate, to specific communities;
(g) recommend quality assurance and management systems for the national health system to the Minister for approval;
(h) keep records of all its activities; and
(i) advise the Minister on any matter referred to it by the Minister.


(2) The Office may—
(a) issue guidelines for the benefit of health establishments on the implementation of prescribed norms and standards;
(b) collect or request any information relating to prescribed norms and standards from health establishments and users;
(c) liaise with any other regulatory authority and may, without limiting the generality of this power, require the necessary information from, exchange information with and receive information from any such authority in respect of—
(i) matters of common interest; or
(ii) a specific complaint or investigation; and
(d) negotiate cooperative agreements with any regulatory authority in order to—
(i) coordinate and harmonise the exercise of jurisdiction over health norms and standards; and
(ii) ensure the consistent application of the principles of this Act.


[Section 79 amended by section 5 of Act No. 12 of 2013]