On 22nd of September 2019 in New York, on the side lines of the High Level Meeting on Universal Healthcare Coverage (UHC), WACI Health, Rwanda NGOs Forum, IMRO, GFAN Africa and The Global Fund organized an engaging panel discussion themed: ‘Domestic Resource Mobilization and sustainable Health Financing in Africa’
This side event joined in the worldwide discussions on achieving sustainable financing for UHC in Africa through increased domestic resources for health.
External resources can support as well as be leveraged to increase domestic financing. According to the 2019 Investment Case for the Global Fund, a successful 6th replenishment of the Global Fund will spur US $46bn in domestic resources from implementing countries towards ending HIV, TB and malaria as epidemics, as well as strengthening health systems. It is critical that African Governments leverage this window of opportunity by supporting the replenishment and also by stepping up their direct investments into health programs.
Panellists discussed the status of domestic resource mobilization for UHC in Africa. Africa’s leaders have in the past shown understanding on the importance of self-reliance through DRM as the primary source of development financing and demonstrated the will to improve the health of its populations (Agenda 2063, Africa Leadership Meeting). Commendably, African Union member states have increased the percentage of their government budget allocations for health, only seven AU states have reached the recommended 5% of GDP to health (2019 Africa Scorecard on Domestic Financing for Health). This is a clear indication that the continent has not moved sufficiently towards sustainability in health financing and as such Africa remains far behind the target it has set for itself of investing US$86.30 per capita, 5% of GDP and 15% of the government budget in health.
On the side lines of the HLM, GFAN Africa met France’s Global Health Ambassador Ms Stephanie Seydoux. The team had cordial discussions on GFAN Africa’s mobilization works for a successful 6th replenishment of the Global Fund.
Still, while in New York, GFAN Africa, WACI Health, Section 27 joined other partners in health in a protest against the removal of progressive language from the political declaration.
The UHC HLM brought together for the very first time, Heads of State and Governments, representatives of States and Governments, Civil Society, Foundations and Private Sector to re-affirm their commitment to achieve UHC and agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development.