Neil Kirby

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Head of Healthcare & Life Sciences

Location: Johannesburg

Tel: +27 11 535 8198

Fax: +27 11 535 8698



Neil Kirby is a Director and Head of Healthcare & Life Sciences and has been practicing in healthcare regulatory law for 20 years. He advises in the Healthcare & Life Sciences, Disputes and Regulatory practice areas. His specialisations extending to consumer protection law; privacy and the protection of personal information; and environmental law. Neil advises the South African private healthcare sector extensively on all matters pertaining to healthcare regulatory law including medical schemes, professional practice, medicines, foodstuffs, medical devices and national health insurance. Recognised both domestically and internationally as a regulatory expert in healthcare and related laws, Neil also advises on matters concerning the Consumer Protection Act No. 68 of 2008; the Protection of Personal Information Act No. 4 of 2013; and the Promotion of Access to Information Act No. 2 of 2000.


  • Disputes
  • Healthcare & Life Sciences
  • Regulatory
  • Healthcare law
  • Constitutional law
  • Environmental law
  • Consumer protection law
  • Protection of Personal Information law


  • Neil advises extensively on matters pertaining to the proposed National Health Insurance Scheme.
  • Neil advised members of the private healthcare sector in respect of the reviewing and setting aside of the National Health Reference Price List in 2010.
  • Neil advises a number of medical schemes in respect of the application of the provisions of the Medical Schemes Act No. 131 of 1998, as amended, in respect of both the design of benefits, complaints to the Registrar of Medical Schemes and the application of the Rules of various medical schemes to various third parties, including members.
  • Neil advised Omegalabs Proprietary Limited in respect of the classification of its product Dermalex as a medical device, the decision by the North Gauteng High Court being seminal in the application of the provisions of the Medicines and Related Substances Act No. 101 of 1965, as amended, to medical devices.
  • Neil has advised on numerous matters pertaining to the licensing of private health establishments, the regulations dealing with private health establishments both provisionally and nationally and the challenges faced by private health establishments in respect of the licensing application for purposes of operating and running a hospital in the private sector.
  • BA LLB and LLM (University of the Witwatersrand)
  • Certificate in Environmental Law (University of the Witwatersrand)
  • 2000: Director, Werksmans
  • Head of the Healthcare & Life Sciences practice area


  • Member of the Council of the Legal Practice Division of the International Bar Association from 2017 to 2020
  • Chair of the Corporate Social Responsibility Committee of the International Bar Association 2014 - 2016
  • Named as a leading lawyer in the field of ‘Life Sciences - Regulatory’ by Who’s Who Legal 2015 – 2021
  • Named as a recommended lawyer for 'Government Contracts' by Who's Who Legal
  • Co-chair of the Healthcare & Life Sciences Law Committee of the International Bar Association 2012-2013
  • Named as a leading lawyer in Dispute Resolution (2008-2016 and 2018) and in Public Law (2019) by Chambers Global: The World's Leading Lawyers for Business
  • Named as a recommended lawyer in Dispute Resolution as well as Healthcare cases by The Legal500 in 2018
  • Author of numerous articles in his various fields of specialisation Contributing author of "Healthcare in South Africa" 2009 (4th Edition), published by Profile Media
  • Chairperson of Campaigning for Cancer NGO from 2009 to January 2016.
  • Reviews the 'Medical Schemes' title on Lexis Nexis' Forms & Precedents.
  • Co-patron of the South African Cystic Fibrosis Trust.
  • Member of the International Bar Association