Health Still More Expensive Than Any Other Global Economies

By Vera Shawiza / February 21, 2019 | 6:31 am



HIV

Spending on health is growing faster than the rest of the global economy, accounting for 10 percent of global gross domestic product (GDP).

A new report on Global Health Expenditure dubbed ‘Public Spending on Health: A Closer Look at Global Trends’ by the World Health Organization (WHO) reveals a swift upward trajectory of global health spending, which is particularly noticeable in low- and middle-income countries where health spending is growing on average 6 percent annually compared with 4 percent in high-income countries.

In 2016, the world spent US$ 7.5 trillion on health, representing close to 10 percent of global GDP. Health’s share of GDP is greatest in high-income countries, at around 8.2 percent on average. For both low- and middle-income countries, health expenditure is approximately 6.3 percent of GDP.

The distribution of health spending globally remains highly unequal. Despite GDP and health spending growing fastest in low- and middle-income countries, a large gap persists between rich and poor countries.

In 2016, median per capita health spending was over US$ 2,000 in high-income countries but just a fifth of that (US$ 400) in upper-middle income and one-twentieth of that (US$ 100) in low and lower-middle income countries. This inequity in health spending is also illustrated by the imbalance between health spending and population. Only 20 percent of the world’s population live-in high-income countries, and yet these countries account for close to 80 percent of global health spending.

Whereas the top 10 countries spent US$ 5,000 or more per person in 2016, the bottom 10 countries spent less than US$ 30 per person. This inequity has not shown any signs of significant change since 2000.

In middle-income countries, government health expenditure per capita has doubled since the year 2000. On average, governments spend US$60 per person on health in lower-middle income countries and close to US$270 per person in upper-middle income countries.

Governments provide an average of 51 percent of a country’s health spending, while more than 35 percent of health spending per country comes from out-of-pocket expenses. One consequence of this is 100 million people pushed into extreme poverty each year.

According to the report, there is a trend of increasing domestic public funding for health in low- and middle-income countries and declining external funding in middle-income countries and thus, reliance on out-of-pocket expenses is declining around the world, albeit slowly.

When government spending on health increases, people are less likely to fall into poverty seeking health services. But government spending only reduces inequities in access when allocations are carefully planned to ensure that the entire population can obtain primary health care.

In low- and middle-income countries, new data suggest that more than half of health spending is devoted to primary health care. Yet less than 40 percent of all spending on primary health care comes from governments.

The report further discloses that as domestic spending increases, the proportion of funding provided by external aid has dropped to less than 1 percent of global health expenditure. Almost half of these external funds are devoted to three diseases – HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis (TB) and malaria.

The report clearly illustrates the transition of middle-income countries to domestic funding of health systems where external aid remains essential to many countries, particularly low-income countries.

Health is a human right and all countries need to prioritize efficient, cost-effective primary health care as the path to achieving universal health coverage and the Sustainable Development Goals.





About Vera Shawiza

Vera Shawiza is Soko Directory’s in-house journalist. Her zealous nature ensures that sufficient and relevant content is generated for the Soko Directory website and sourcing information from clients is easy as smooth sailing.Vera can be reached at: (020) 528 0222 or Email: info@sokodirectory.com

View other posts by Vera Shawiza


More Articles From This Author







Trending Stories










Other Related Articles










SOKO DIRECTORY & FINANCIAL GUIDE



ARCHIVES

2020
  • January 2020 (272)
  • February 2020 (309)
  • March 2020 (390)
  • April 2020 (1)
  • 2019
  • January 2019 (255)
  • February 2019 (216)
  • March 2019 (285)
  • April 2019 (254)
  • May 2019 (272)
  • June 2019 (251)
  • July 2019 (338)
  • August 2019 (293)
  • September 2019 (306)
  • October 2019 (313)
  • November 2019 (362)
  • December 2019 (320)
  • 2018
  • January 2018 (291)
  • February 2018 (219)
  • March 2018 (278)
  • April 2018 (225)
  • May 2018 (238)
  • June 2018 (178)
  • July 2018 (256)
  • August 2018 (249)
  • September 2018 (256)
  • October 2018 (287)
  • November 2018 (284)
  • December 2018 (185)
  • 2017
  • January 2017 (183)
  • February 2017 (194)
  • March 2017 (207)
  • April 2017 (104)
  • May 2017 (169)
  • June 2017 (205)
  • July 2017 (190)
  • August 2017 (195)
  • September 2017 (186)
  • October 2017 (235)
  • November 2017 (253)
  • December 2017 (266)
  • 2016
  • January 2016 (165)
  • February 2016 (165)
  • March 2016 (190)
  • April 2016 (143)
  • May 2016 (245)
  • June 2016 (182)
  • July 2016 (271)
  • August 2016 (248)
  • September 2016 (234)
  • October 2016 (191)
  • November 2016 (243)
  • December 2016 (153)
  • 2015
  • January 2015 (1)
  • February 2015 (4)
  • March 2015 (166)
  • April 2015 (108)
  • May 2015 (116)
  • June 2015 (120)
  • July 2015 (148)
  • August 2015 (157)
  • September 2015 (188)
  • October 2015 (169)
  • November 2015 (173)
  • December 2015 (207)
  • 2014
  • March 2014 (2)
  • 2013
  • March 2013 (10)
  • June 2013 (1)
  • 2012
  • March 2012 (7)
  • April 2012 (15)
  • May 2012 (1)
  • July 2012 (1)
  • August 2012 (4)
  • October 2012 (2)
  • November 2012 (2)
  • December 2012 (1)
  • 2011
    2010
    2009
    2008
    2007
    2006
    2005
    2004
    2003
    2002
    2001
    2000
    1999
    1998
    1997
    1996
    1995
    1994
    1993
    1992
    1991
    1990
    1989
    1988
    1987
    1986
    1985
    1984
    1983
    1982
    1981
    1980
    1979
    1978
    1977
    1976
    1975
    1974
    1973
    1972
    1971
    1970
    1969
    1968
    1967
    1966
    1965
    1964
    1963
    1962
    1961
    1960
    1959
    1958
    1957
    1956
    1955
    1954
    1953
    1952
    1951
    1950