UHC Headlines from Around the Globe

Motsoaledi names board of new Office of Health Standards Compliance

South Africa

(Business Day Live) - HEALTH Minister Aaron Motsoaledi on Wednesday unveiled the board of the newly established Office of Health Standards Compliance, a statutory body created through the amendment of the National Health Act to monitor compliance with norms and standards for healthcare delivery.

The 12-member board consists of healthcare professionals, academics and activists. It will be chaired by Lizo Mazwai, emeritus professor of surgery and a past chairman of the South African Medical Research Council.

Remarks by World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim at the 2014 Prince Mahidol Award Conference


(World Bank) - Thank you, Dr. Komatra for the kind introduction. I would also like to thank Professor Vicharn and the PMAC Secretariat for all your hard work in organizing the conference; the Royal Thai Government for their hospitality; Professor Rachata; Lincoln Chen and our fellow conference co-hosts and partners in JICA, USAID, WHO and the Rockefeller Foundation; and to my good friends, Dr. Suwit and Paul Farmer.

Yesterday I was honored to share the Prince Mahidol award with a distinguished group of individuals who have spent many years fighting to end the HIV-AIDS epidemic. I accepted the award on behalf of a broad and diverse group of advocates who worked as part of a global movement to make treatment accessible to people everywhere, no matter their income or geography.

Sadly, our work is unfinished. Millions are still becoming infected each year, and many are shut out of treatment because of inadequate services and frankly, discrimination.

Expert Calls For Improved Health Insurance Scheme


(Daily Times) - The Chief Executive Officer, Avon Health Care Limited, Mrs. Adesimbo Ukiri, has called for improved partnership between health care providers and Health Management Organisations (HMOs) to ensure adequate provision of health services to patients under the health insurance scheme.

Speaking during a training and awareness programme organised for staff of hospitals under Avon network, Ukiri said,offering poor services to patients under the health insurance scheme may discourage others from enrolling.

Ukiri said,“When people who have purchased health plans need it, they don’t come to HMOs, they go to the hospitals. It is the experience they have at those hospitals that will determine if they made the proper choice by going for health insurance. If they have a good experience at these hospitals, that is when they can become advocates for the scheme.

We have no hand in demo against capitation


(Citi FM Online) - The Health Insurance Service Providers of Ghana (HISPAG) in the Ashanti Region has distanced itself from the intended demonstration against the health insurance capitation in the region on Thursday.

Kumasi based Kessben FM announced an intended demonstration against health insurance capitation to get the National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA) to withdraw it.

The capitation is a payment mechanism under the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) and it has been piloted in the Ashanti Region for two years.

The Chief Executive Officer of HISPAG, Frank Richard Torblu told Citi News, the association is in talks with the NHIA to resolve all outstanding issues.

He was of the opinion that the planned demonstration is unwarranted since there are ongoing negotiations between the NHIA and stakeholders.


Poor patients get health cover benefit


(The Times of India) - The district is ranked third in the state in implementing the Rajeev Gandhi Jeevandayi Arogya Yojana (RGJAY), with 1,487 persons from Aurangabad undergoing procedures through the state government's health insurance scheme in its second phase since November. Mumbai tops the list with 9,033 beneficiaries, followed by Solapur district with 2,664 patients availing the benefit of the health insurance scheme.

In Aurangabad, the online application process started after the launch of the second phase of the scheme in November. Till January 27, among the 21 empanelled hospitals, Kamalnayan Bajaj Hospital had performed most maximum number of surgeries (552), the Mahatma Gandhi Mission Hospital had conducted 284 surgeries.

One Third of Population Under Health Coverage


(Sudan Vision) - Khartoum - As disclosed by Dr. Mustafa Saleh, Director of Health insurance fund, 1/3 of Sudan's population, a percentage of 35% of the country's population, is covered by health insurance. "Notwithstanding, health coverage in Sudan is faced by challenges," he added, urging seeking avenues to cover 2.3 million poor families. Saleh who was taking part in a media forum on the universal health coverage recently convened in Khartoum, said 75% of health facilities provide health coverage.

Meanwhile, Prof. Khairy Abdulrahman, chairman of the fund board of directors said the state provides health insurance to 75 thousand families at a cost of SDG 26 billion.

WHO representative in his turn; demanded provision of states with health insurance services, stressing on preventive ones such quitting smoking, awareness on hazards of overuse of sugar and salt, in addition to services to the handicapped.

22 medical officers attend civic meet to curb malaria


(Times of India) - NAVI MUMBAI: The medical officers (MO) of the urban health centres (UHC) attended the monthly meeting of the civic health committee, held on January 10, for the first time. Members of the committee said that the presence of medical officers is crucial to ascertain the health of the city.

The meeting was attended by 22 medical officers, along with the in-charge Dr Ramesh Nikam. "The MOs were asked to attend the meeting to have a better understanding of the efforts being put in to curb malaria and dengue in the city. Since each MO has been given a specific area to monitor, the consensus was that they can explain the ground reality better," said Nikam.

Meanwhile, the committee members also said that they wanted the MOs to attend the meeting to sort out their alleged lack of interest to remain at the UHCs after OPD hours. "Ideally, the MOs are required to do sight visits after the OPD hours, however the reality is quite different.

The UPA Regime: A Decade of Massive Healthcare Reform


(The Economic Times) - As we inch towards the end of United Progressive Alliance's (UPA's) second term, it is important to look back and reflect on what was accomplished and what is still to be achieved. If health indicators are any yardstick, then the UPA's thrust on social healthcare has led to improved health of citizens and set the stage for future reforms.

In 2004, when UPA came to power, expenditure on public health was around Rs 7,500 crore. This has now almost quadrupled to Rs 27,000 crore. In the beginning of UPA's regime, the National Rural Health Mission (NRHM), known to be "the most ambitious rural health initiative ever", was initiated.

The NRHM was formed to provide effective healthcare delivery to our rural population, especially women and children. The latest data shows that in the last 10 years, infant mortality rate (IMR) has come down from 58 per 1,000 to 44.

Is the National Health Insurance Scheme Benefitting the Poor and Vulnerable? Abantu Wants to Know


(AllAfrica) - OPINION By G.D.

World Bank pledges $2bn for Myanmar


(Daily News Egypt) - AFP – The World Bank announced on Sunday a $2 billion development programme for Myanmar, including projects to improve access to energy and healthcare in the impoverished former military-ruled nation.

Bank president Jim Yong Kim, on his first visit to the former pariah state, said half of the funds would be used to expand power supplies, in a country where more than 70% of the population does not have access to reliable electricity.

“We are increasing our support for the huge reform effort underway in Myanmar because we want to help the government bring benefits to poor people even more quickly,” Kim said in a statement.

“Expanding access to electricity in a country like Myanmar can help transform a society — children will be able to study at night, shops will stay open, and health clinics will have lights and energy to power life-saving technology.