by Jackie Smith – SA SURE Plus Programme Manager
This session was run by Save the Children and focused on the importance of governments allocating sufficient funds to primary health care (PHC) so as to provide a stable platform of quality for universal health coverage (UHC).
The examples shared came from countries outside of South Africa, but some of the recommendations apply very aptly to the South African context. Notably, a case study from Zimbabwe reported that, against the backdrop of an 85% unemployment rate, the issue of collecting taxes to pay for UHC is almost a non-starter, as most of the recipients are living below the poverty line.
Nonetheless, it is encouraging to hear that with Zimbabwe's change in leadership, civil society has been afforded a more participatory role in discussions on health budgets, leading to some promising results.
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