Health Desk: May 12, 2017-- A new study said Bangladeshis are the sixth biggest out-of-pocket spenders on health in the world.
The study identified health spending trends and country specific deviations for 184 nations from 1995 to 2014 to provide insight into what future health financing challenges are look like.
The findings show that, on average, economic development is associated with increases in health spending per person and decreases in the share of spending that is financed out-of-pocket (OOP).
Bangladeshis and Indians spend 65.6 percent from their own pocket while seeking healthcare. Azerbaijan, Cameroon, Nigeria, Sudan, and Tajikistan are the five countries where people have to pay more than Bangladeshis and Indians.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) advocates strongly against out-of-pocket payments for health as this can cause households to incur catastrophic expenditures, which in turn can push them into poverty.
The need to pay out-of-pocket can also mean that households do not seek care when they need it. To address this, WHO suggests adequate amount of prepaid resources for health to ensure access to health services and for the pursuit of universal health coverage.
Director General for Health Services Abul Kalam Azad said that they are aware of the fact that people have to pay more than the government in Bangladesh for health services.
The findings of the study expand the understanding of the health financing transition.
In 2014 health spending per capita across all countries was $1279.
This spending was concentrated in high-income countries, and ranged from $33 in Somalia to $9237 in the US, highlighting the tremendous variation in how much is spent on health around the world.
Disparate spending levels also exist within World Bank income groups. In 2014, health spending across low-income countries was $120 per capita, but range from $33 in Somalia to $347 in Uganda.
The study published in the British medical journal The Lancet.