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Wrapping up

Watch Doris Osei Afriyie and Guenther Fink summarise Universal Health Coverage and other topics that are important for financing healthcare in Africa.
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DORIS: This week, we examined health financing in Africa. We explored Universal Health Coverage, different ways of raising revenue, and Results-Based Financing. We saw that financing healthcare systems in Africa is challenging because of its high informal employment and unemployment rates. Universal Health Coverage means that access to high-quality essential healthcare services is available to the entire population without causing financial hardship for those in need of such services. The amount of money raised for healthcare services is important. The essential question, however, is how this money is spent in terms of pooling and purchasing services. Focusing on vulnerable populations and essential services is critical. We learned how, in Zambia, the government is attempting to achieve Universal Health Coverage through its national health insurance scheme.
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We also investigated how low- and middle-income countries raise revenue to finance Universal Health Coverage.
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GUENTHER: We introduced Results-Based Financing and saw that it can improve the quantity and quality of the healthcare services that are delivered. However, it is important to note that the design of Results-Based Financing is complex and that its focus on financing targets can reduce healthcare workers’ intrinsic motivation. We hope that you have gained new insights into healthcare financing strategies in Africa and have seen how these can be applied in different contexts.
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DORIS: Thank you all for your lively participation and interesting comments!
This week, we examined health financing in Africa, exploring Universal Health Coverage and different ways of raising revenue and purchasing services from health providers.

Universal Health Coverage (UHC) ensures that everybody has access to essential health services – whether promotive, preventative, curative, rehabilitative, or palliative. High-quality health services should be available to the entire population and without putting any patient at risk of financial hardship. At present, UHC has not yet been fully implemented in any country.

So, what can we learn specifically in the area of health financing from African countries? This question obviously has many answers. In order to tackle it, this week we addressed the challenges that African countries face when it comes to financing their healthcare systems.

Financing healthcare systems in Africa is challenging due to African countries’ large informal sectors and high unemployment rates. Governments must employ strategies that suit the specific contexts of their country. They can do this in various ways, such as the manner in which they raise funds for healthcare provision, how they pool health funds, and what strategies they use for purchasing health services, such as Results-Based Financing.

In your opinion, what can other countries learn from the example of African countries? Share your thoughts in the comment section below. Remember: you can also ‘like’ and reply to other learners’ comments.

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Examining African Contributions to Global Health

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