Financial Protection

Financial Protection

Health Care Financing and Universal Health Coverage

Financial protection is an essential part of universal health coverage. It means that people should not suffer financial hardship due to paying for health services. How resources for health care are mobilized is also an essential element to universal health coverage: this must be equitable in order to protect those least able to pay. Health care funding must also be efficiently managed and administered to ensure that it delivers the best value for money in health services delivery.

Financial Protection in South-East Asia

Many people in South-East Asia live with the threat that at any time catastrophically high out-of-pocket expenditure on health care could push them into poverty. Over 65 million people are pushed into poverty because of health expenditure. Being pushed into poverty mostly because of direct out-of-pocket expenditures, adds to the already high incidence of poverty in the region.

Measures being taken by countries to increase the level of financial protection include increasing Government health care expenditure and directly funding more health care services, reducing the direct burden on individuals and families. Some governments are implementing tax based and/or mandatory contributory schemes with little or no direct payments for key services.

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