BlessWorld Foundation International

Affecting the World Through Health
A Global Health Initiative

Global Health and Financing



As described by the World Health Organization (WHO), health financing involves the generation, allocation and use of financial resources in health systems. The aim of health financing is to make funding available, provide financial incentives to health service providers and ensure that all individuals- irrespective of wealth and social class, have access to effective public health and personal health care. Policies regarding health care financing are aimed towards universal health coverage especially relating to:

  • Sources and ways to raise and pool together sufficient funds for health
  • Means to overcome financial barriers that cause disparities in health care
  • Ways to increase healthcare access as well as provide equitable and efficient variation of health services

Health financing ensures the provision of funds and resources needed for the operation of health systems. It is a major determinant of the performance of health systems, and can be assessed in terms of equity, efficiency, and health outcomes in a particular country or region. Directing public funds towards services that address the healthcare needs in a population is essential for a country to prosper health-wise, and attain universal health coverage (UHC) – the gold standard for health financing. UHC is a system of healthcare financing that ensures all populations and communities can access and use the health care services they need. These services may be preventive, curative, palliative or rehabilitative and should be efficient, economical, effective and of good quality. The current system of financing in health care- UHC is based on three major principles including:

  • Equitable access to health services
  • Standardized and excellent quality of health services
  • Protection against financial-risk

UHC is rooted in the 1948 constitution of WHO which documented health as fundamental human right. Subsequently, the Alma Ata declaration emphasized the Health for All agenda in 1978. Health financing is crucial to both the quality and accessibility to healthcare. Although not fully implemented in many countries due to private out of pocket financing, UHC is the WHO recommended method of healthcare financing because of its benefits. Private financing and out of pocket payment perpetuates inequities in healthcare accessibility and use. Consequently, public funding aims to achieve UHC which seeks to eliminate these inequities by providing the same quality of care to all people across board- rich or the poor, in rural or urban communities. The future of health financing is tending towards UHC for most developed countries, although there is still some private funding. However, in undeveloped countries like Nigeria, where the government doesn’t care about citizens, private out of pocket funding is still foremost.

Comments are closed.