Lack of resources and poor infrastructure are governments’ challenges being encountered in providing a sustainable healthcare system when it comes to health care. This has been compounded by the present pandemic, poverty and the resources drained of home-based professionals moving abroad, in search of privileges and a better average of living.
In my survey from the Health Care Index, derived from analysis provided by the health ministries of countries, and the almighty World Health Organization (WHO) in the health sector, I totally agree where Africa’s most populous country, Nigeria, ranked below four other African countries; South Africa topped the African with an index of 64.14, followed by Tunisia who scored 57.18, making it the second on the list of African Countries with the best Healthcare system. Although, this is an estimation of my personal view of the overall quality of the health care system, staff, doctors, cost, health care professionals, equipment, etc.
Despite Nigeria not being at the top, I wish to praise major stakeholders in the health industry for utilizing the minimal available funds presented through the annual budget, but hence there’s need for the Nigerian President to look urgently and allocate more funds to the healthcare sector even at this time.
1. South Africa
South Africa swanks to the top of my list as the country with highest standard of healthcare in Africa with a whooping health care index of 64.14 and expenditure of 115.76. Although, there had been are plans to implement a National Health Insurance (NHI) scheme to provide more free services for all and improve the quality of public healthcare. With my journey around Johannesburg in 2012, I have personally noticed that they intend competing with South America, Europe, America and Asia; as there are over 200 private hospitals across these countries which offer services that match the outside continent. The South Africa government wholehearted fund the healthcare system and spending through point-of-care spending and taxation from those using the general services.
Funded from taxation run by what I call the Caisse Nationale d’Assurance Maladie that provides care for the greater part of her inhabitants. Tunisia has a public health system of healthcare index of 57.18 and expenditure of 100.55 which also includes health centers providing district and regional hospitals with equipments and manpower, primary care, and university hospitals. Though not have been here but it’s worth it considering their struggles over the years till this year 2020.
Kenya sits on the third position with the nation that has the best healthcare system in East Africa of health care index of 55.59% and expenditure of 98.02%. Making a good progress in expanding access to primary health care services, free maternity services, elimination of user fees for public primary care facilities, and health insurance subsidies for the elderly and severely disabled, Kenya though not much known by other Africa nations or outside the continent have done immensely well in catering for her citizens health.
The expediency of location and ease cost has made this country to be placed on the map of country with one of Africans best healthcare system. A onetime nation known for having rich cultural heritage among Africans finest country, with a health care index of 54.86% and expenditure of 99.61%, Algeria has a public health care system which is accessible and free of charge to the general public of Algeria. Algerians benefits immensely as their government finances the federal health care system.
Placing the Pharaohs of Egypt in this position calls for no regrets. Egypt just as her counterpart Nigeria operates in both the public and private sectors having a health care index of 45.84% and expenditure of 78.61%. With this country currently working on an overhaul of its public healthcare system to improve its quality, the public health coverage offered through the Ministry of Health a series of medical facilities providing free health services but has not meet a standard to care for 90% of her citizens.
This country has a health care index of 45.72% and expenditure of 77.88%, with the greater part of the free healthcare services and administration focused on the general public since her first health care policy devised in 2017 after her independence in 1959. The Ministry of Health runs the Basic Care Health Network, the National Institutes and Laboratories, and the Hospital Network through funding and administration. A special hospital is owned and run by the country Defense Department, while the city health service is run by the local governments. Though has a system that covers all workers suffering from sickness, maternity, invalidity, and retirement through social protection yet there is much to be done.
This country has one of the most sought-after healthcare systems in Africa despite the disastrous Genocide in 1994 the country has continued to leap expectations with much opposition writing them as a drained economy. With their present use of robots namely Akazuba, Ikizere and Ngabo to fight the present pandemic at the Kanyinya treatment facility, they continue to blossom. The country’s budget ensures that the health sector gets over 20 percent of funding juxtaposed to the Abuja declaration of 15 percent which many countries on the continent have not yet adopted. The country currently has the maximum government income, but sadly doesn’t have enough private stakeholders in the sector.
I am quite jealous despite placing them in this position, due to their National Medical Aid Scheme, which is crucial in reaching universal health coverage. The country seems to be doing wonderfully well, congratulation to President John Magufuli who has been the brain behind the health sector in Tanzania, making the headlines and prioritizing the improvement of public health institutions.
The last on this list of better healthcare in Africa is this nation who has been making strides in ensuring that their workforce and medicals are at world standard. Looking forward, as area of expertise by professionals are increasing, so her desire to improve access to medical care among various class of citizens across the nation. The nation is doing well in making sure that it opens post for medical practitioners so that the country can have more special cases treated.
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Cover image credit: How South Africa