To assist them, a team of researchers from the University of Montreal, with support from the international NGO HELP (Hilfe zur Selbsthilfe e.V.), has produced a thorough compilation of all existing knowledge on this subject, in four bilingual policy briefs. These briefs, which will be distributed as of November 2009 in Burkina Faso, are available at no charge on our Web site. Information is power, especially when it comes to defining health policy. Decision-makers need to have access to all the information and experience that can help them to implement the best strategies in their countries. The current situation
Since the 1980s, nearly all African countries have implemented user fees in the hope of renewing their healthcare systems. Today, it is clear that this payment system excludes the most vulnerable and in fact puts them at risk of further impoverishment. Yet, there are other options besides user fees that have been the subject of documented studies. The problem is that their results are fragmented and often written in English, whereas most African decision-makers are francophone.
Solutions are possible!
This was an intensive project for the University of Montreal researchers. These four bilingual policy briefs present four options that have been shown to promote access to care : abolition of user fees for healthcare services, case-by-case exemptions for the worst-off, health equity funds, and health insurance that includes coverage for the poor. The objective of this project? To give leaders a comprehensive overview of actions that have already been undertaken to evaluate what options are best suited to their context.
Made for Africa, with Africa
With the assistance of an international NGO (HELP – Hilfe zur Selbsthilfe e.V.), consultations were carried out in Burkina Faso to strengthen the relevance of these policy briefs. Starting in November, these four documents will be distributed in Burkina Faso as part of a HELP project that will test a trial of user fees abolition. They will also be available on the Web site of the Teasdale-Corti team
The research team
The work of this research team at the International Health Unit (Unité de santé internationale – USI) of the University of Montreal / CRCHUM, is focused on vulnerability and equity in health in Africa. The team, directed by Valéry Ridde, Ph.D. is part of Canada’s Teasdale-Corti Global Health Research Partnership Program. Production of these documents was funded by CIHR, ECHO (the European Commission’s Humanitarian Aid Office), and the Teasdale-Corti Program (CIHR, IDRC, Health Canada, CIDA).
Maryève Tassot, Communications Officer
International Health Unit (University of Montreal/CHUM)
20 Years of Partnership for Global Health
Tel.: 514-890-8000, ext. 16340
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