Going Universal

(CC) World Bank GroupThe World Bank Group has just published “Going Universal: How 24 countries are implementing universal health coverage reforms from the bottom up.”

The study looks at how 24 developing countries have embarked on the long journey to universal health coverage, with a focus on expanding coverage to the poor.

According to the WHO and the World Bank Group, 400 million people do not have access to essential health services and 6% of people in low- and middle-income countries are tipped into or pushed further into extreme poverty because of health spending.

Countries studied in Going Universal  include:  Argentina, Brazil, Chile, China, Columbia, Costa Rica, Ethiopia, Georgia, Ghana, Guatemala, India, Indonesia, Jamaica, Kenya, Kyrgyz Republic, Mexico, Nigeria, Peru, Philippines, South Africa, Thailand, Tunisia, Turkey and Vietnam.

The report finds that the 24 countries’ programs are “new, massive and transformational:” Most were launched in the past decade, together they cover more than 2 billion people, and all are fundamentally changing the way health systems operate. Each of the programs aims to overcome a legacy of inequality by tackling both financing and provision gaps.

Download the Going Universal report.