Home Finance WHO Barcelona course on health financing gives Western Balkans experts tools to move towards universal health coverage

WHO Barcelona course on health financing gives Western Balkans experts tools to move towards universal health coverage

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At the 10th edition of the WHO Barcelona course on Health Financing for Universal Health Coverage, more than 50 experts, including broad representation from the Western Balkans, gathered to examine effective ways to improve health health financing policy and accelerate progress towards universal health coverage.

Delegations from Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo*, North Macedonia and Serbia actively participated in the five-day event. Organized by the WHO Office for Health Systems Financing in Barcelona and co-funded by the European Union (EU), the course took place from September 19 to 23, 2022 in Barcelona, ​​Spain. It enabled participants to combine systematic thinking about health systems and health financing with an interactive and practical approach to improving health system performance through better policy analysis, design and implementation .

“The Albanian delegation was happy to have participated in the course and appreciated the overview of the key principles and tools of health financing,” said Ms. Nejsi Lleshi, Advisor to the Ministry of Health and Social Protection.

Ms Lleshi was accompanied by colleagues from the Ministry of Health, the National Health Insurance Fund, the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria and the WHO Albania country office. “We look forward to seeing how we can use these concepts to improve health financing policy in Albania,” she added.

The course included a hands-on exercise in which country teams used a diagnostic tool to identify the root causes of a key health system performance problem, then applied techniques to address the problem through financing policy of health.

The course helped many participants rethink their country’s specific health financing challenges. “Addressing irregular budgetary flows in the health system must be a priority to move our country towards universal health coverage,” said Mr. Zlate Mehmedovic, National Focal Point for Primary Health Care at the Ministry of Health of North Macedonia. The Macedonian delegation included colleagues from the Ministry of Health and the National Health Insurance Fund.

The participation of these delegations was made possible thanks to financial assistance from the EU. The EU support is part of a broader plan to strengthen financial protection – affordable access to healthcare – in the Western Balkans.

As part of this project, the WHO office in Barcelona worked closely with national experts and other health system stakeholders to monitor catastrophic and impoverishing health spending, identify and address gaps in health coverage and find ways to reduce unmet need and financial hardship. caused by direct payments.

Financial protection is an indicator of the Sustainable Development Goals, is part of the European Pillar of Social Rights and is at the center of the European Work Program, the strategic framework of WHO/Europe. Through the WHO office in Barcelona, ​​WHO/Europe monitors financial protection in more than 40 countries.

*In accordance with United Nations Security Council resolution 1244 (1999).

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