Health financing policy

Selected country experiences


In recent years, a number of health reform proposals have been adopted or pioneered in Cambodia, including official user fees, sub-contracting government health service delivery to non-government providers, and community based health insurance. These health reform measures have acted to reduce the burden of health costs on the poor and to improve access.

Fee exemption systems have, though, failed to protect the poor, who have largely been excluded from access to health care due to cost and other barriers. Now, a new model of health financing and relief for the poor has emerged, called health equity funding. Health equity funding has been particularly successful in reducing financial barriers and increasing utilization of government services. Health equity funding appears to be an efficient and effective way to overcome inequalities and extend health service coverage.


Chief researcher and main author of the report:

  • Dr Peter Annear, Research Associate, RMIT University, Melbourne

Supporting researchers and contributors to the report:

  • Mr David Wilkinson, health-sector consultant, Phnom Penh
  • Mr Men Rithy Chean, Center for Advanced Studies, Phnom Penh
  • Mr Maurits van Pelt, MoPoTsyo Patient Information Centre, Phnom Penh

Technical advisors to the research project:

  • Ms Maryam Bigdeli, Health Economics Adviser, WHO Cambodia
  • Dr Lo Veasna Kiry, Mr Ros Chhun Eang and the Department of Planning and Health Information, Ministry of Health, Cambodia

Research assistants:

  • Ms Terri Ly and Mr Chap Prem