Foreign Aid Should Enhance, Not Replace, Domestic Health Spending In Developing Countries

A case in Uganda of a woman bleeding to death while giving birth “underscores an unintended consequence of global health aid,” a Globe and Mail editorial writes, adding that “in some parts of sub-Saharan Africa, a reverse trend is under way; for every $1 of development assistance for health, governments have reduced their spending,” according to a study from the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington.

“[I]n the world’s poorest nations, there are competing needs for scarce funds,” the editorial states, and “[w]hile donors cannot interfere with national budget decisions, they have a right to know how their money is being spent.” The editorial concludes, “Foreign aid for Africa’s struggling public health system was designed to enhance – and not replace – the provision by national governments of basic health services” (8/7).

The KFF Daily Global Health Policy Report summarized news and information on global health policy from hundreds of sources, from May 2009 through December 2020. All summaries are archived and available via search.

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