Here is the link for a blog post that has just been published on Oxfam’s Global Health Check – it summarises the recommendations of the paper in my previous post.
Doherty J. 2015. Achieving universal health coverage in Africa: is there a role for formal for-profit providers? Global Health Check. Available at: http://www.globalhealthcheck.org/?p=1841
Doherty J. 2015. Achieving universal health coverage in East and Southern Africa: what role for for-profit providers? Paper presented as part of Panel Session T03P13: Private sector and universal health coverage – examining evidence and deconstructing rhetoric. DOI: 10.13140/RG.2.1.1993.9682. The International Conference on Public Policy, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Milan, Italy, 1-4 July 2015.
This paper cautions that regulatory frameworks governing the behaviour of the for-profit private health sector in Africa are weak.
These frameworks need to be strengthened before promoting the growth of the for-profit private health sector.
This is because, if poorly regulated, the behaviour of the for-profit health sector can lead to health system distortions that undermine progress towards universal access to affordable, quality health care.
More detail on legislation in the region can be found in:
Doherty J. 2015. Regulating the for-profit private health sector: lessons from East and Southern Africa. Health Policy and Planning; 30(3); i93-i102. doi: 10.1093/heapol/czu111.
If anyone missed this in an earlier blog, I’ve posted a preliminary assessment of South Africa’s progress towards universal health coverage here.
The purpose of the assessment is to use what data are available to analyse the extent to which South Africans are enjoying financial protection against the costs of using health care services, and accessing the services they need.
Here is some information on my latest policy brief, as well as the report on which it is based:
EQUINET Policy Brief 35: Legislation on the for-profit private health sector in East and Southern Africa
Doherty J (2013) with UCT HEU, TARSC. Wemos Foundation, Policy brief 35, EQUINET, Harare
While the private sector contributes new resources to the health system, international evidence shows that if left unregulated it may distort the quantity, distribution and quality of health services, and lead to anti-competitive behaviour. As the for-profit private sector is expanding in east and southern African (ESA) countries, governments need to strengthen their regulation of the sector to align it to national health system objectives. This policy brief examines how existing laws in the region address the quantity, quality, distribution and price of private health care services, based on evidence made available from desk review and in-country experts. It proposes areas for strengthening the regulation of individual health care practitioners, private facilities and health insurers. A more detailed discussion paper (#87) on the laws and information in the brief is available at www.equinetafrica.org/bibl/docs/EQ%20Diss%2087%20Private%20HS.pdf.
EQUINET (the Network on Equity in Health in Southern Africa) have just published an editorial and report on legislation governing the for-profit private health sector in east and southern Africa. To access these publications, click on the links below:
Doherty J. 2013. We cannot afford to leave the for-profit private health sector unregulated in Africa (editorial). EQUINET Newsletter 150: 01 August 2013. Available at: http://www.equinetafrica.org/newsletter/
Doherty J. 2013. Legislation on the for-profit private health sector in east and southern Africa. EQUINET Discussion Paper 99. Harare: HEU, EQUINET. Available at: http://www.equinetafrica.org/bibl/docs/Diss%2099%20privsector%20laws%20Aug2013.pdf
My latest book chapter has just been published:
Doherty J, McIntyre D. 2013. Addressing the failings of public health systems: should the private sector be an instrument of choice? In: Surender D, Walker R (eds). 2013. Social policy in a developing world. Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar.
I would like to get into contact with researchers, policy-makers and legal experts working on appropriate policies and legislation governing the for-profit private health sector in Africa.
Or perhas you do work on other low- or middle-income countries that might be relevant to the African situation?
On the ‘About Jane Doherty’ tab above you will find my e-mail address if you want to let me know about the work you are doing or have research or reports to share.
On the ‘Private health sector’ tab you will find my own work on the private sector (with links to the electronic versions where available). Of particular interest might be:
- FORTHCOMING: A situation analysis of private sector legislation in East and Southern Africa which is still in an early draft form
- FORTHCOMING: Doherty J, McIntyre D. (2013) Addressing the failings of public health systems: should the private sector be an instrument of choice? In: Surender R, Walker R. (2013) Social policy in a developing world. Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar
- Doherty J. 2011. Expansion of the private for-profit health sector in East and Southern Africa. EQUINET with HEU, UCT and TARSC Policy Brief 26. Harare: EQUINET.
- Doherty J. 2011. Expansion of the private health sector in East and Southern Africa. EQUINET Discussion Paper 87. EQUINET: Harare.
- A report summarising research on the for-profit private health sector in South Africa from the 1980s to 2003: Doherty J, Steinberg M. 2003. Priority health care information needs for reform: what role for BHF? Johannesburg: Board of Healthcare Funders.