A health insurance scheme for hospital care in Bwamanda district, Zaire: lessons and questions after 10 years of functioning

A health insurance scheme for hospital care in Bwamanda district, Zaire: lessons and questions... A voluntary insurance scheme for hospital care was launched in 1986 in the Bwamanda district in North West Zaire. The paper briefly reviews the rationale, design and implementation of the scheme and discusses its results and performance over time. The scheme succeeded in generating stable revenue for the hospital in a context where government intervention was virtually absent and external subsidies were most uncertain. Hospital data indicate that hospital services were used by a significantly higher proportion of insured patients than uninsured people. The features of the environment in which the insurance scheme thrived are discussed and the conditions that facilitated its development reviewed. These conditions comprise organizational‐managerial, economic‐financial, social and political factors. The Bwamanda case study illustrates the feasibility of health insurance – at least for hospital‐based inpatient care – at rural district level in sub‐Saharan Africa, but also exemplifies the managerial and social complexity of such financing mechanisms. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Tropical Medicine & International Health Wiley

A health insurance scheme for hospital care in Bwamanda district, Zaire: lessons and questions after 10 years of functioning

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Publisher
Wiley
Copyright
1997 Blackwell Science Ltd
ISSN
1360-2276
eISSN
1365-3156
D.O.I.
10.1046/j.1365-3156.1997.d01-349.x
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

A voluntary insurance scheme for hospital care was launched in 1986 in the Bwamanda district in North West Zaire. The paper briefly reviews the rationale, design and implementation of the scheme and discusses its results and performance over time. The scheme succeeded in generating stable revenue for the hospital in a context where government intervention was virtually absent and external subsidies were most uncertain. Hospital data indicate that hospital services were used by a significantly higher proportion of insured patients than uninsured people. The features of the environment in which the insurance scheme thrived are discussed and the conditions that facilitated its development reviewed. These conditions comprise organizational‐managerial, economic‐financial, social and political factors. The Bwamanda case study illustrates the feasibility of health insurance – at least for hospital‐based inpatient care – at rural district level in sub‐Saharan Africa, but also exemplifies the managerial and social complexity of such financing mechanisms.

Journal

Tropical Medicine & International HealthWiley

Published: Jul 1, 1997

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