Funding for primary health care in developing countries
BMJ 2008;336:518-519 - 8 March 2008- doi:10.1136/bmj.39496. 444271.80
“………The World Health Organization’s World Health Report 2007 deals with access to primary health care as an essential prerequisite for health.1 It acknowledges the importance of the Alma-Ata declaration of 1978, which called for integrated primary health care as a way to deal with major health problems in communities and for access to care as part of a comprehensive national health system.
Yet the mission of Alma-Ata—to provide accessible, affordable, and sustainable primary health care for all—has been implemented only partially in developing countries.2 We have therefore instigated the "15by2015" campaign (www.15by2015.org ), which proposes a funding mechanism for strengthening primary health care in developing countries…………”
Jan De Maeseneer, professor of family medicine1, Chris van Weel, professor of family medicine2, David Egilman, clinical associate professor3, Khaya Mfenyana, professor of family medicine4, Arthur Kaufman, professor of community health5, Nelson Sewankambo, professor of medicine6, Maaike Flinkenflögel, researcher1
Is the declaration of Alma Ata still relevant to primary health care?
Stephen Gillam, consultant in public health - Institute of Public Health, Cambridge
BMJ 2008;336:536-538 - 8 March, 2008
Thirty years after WHO highlighted the importance of primary health care in tackling health inequality in every country, the author reflects on the reasons for slow progress and the implications for today’s health systems
“…..After years of relative neglect, the World Health Organization has recently given strategic prominence to the development of primary health care. This year sees the 30th anniversary of the declaration of Alma Ata (box 1). Convened by WHO and the United Nations Children’s Fund (Unicef), the Alma Ata conference drew representatives from 134 countries, 67 international organisations, and many non-governmental organisations. (China was notably absent.) Primary health care "based on practical, scientifically sound and socially acceptable methods and technology made universally accessible through people’s full participation and at a cost that the community and country can afford" was to be the key to delivering health for all by the year 2000.1 Primary health care in this context includes both primary medical care and activities tackling determinants of ill health ….”
1 Department of Family Medicine and Primary Health Care, Ghent University, Belgium
2 Department of Family Medicine, Radboud University Medical Centre, Nijmegen, Netherlands
3 Brown University, Providence, RI, USA
4 Department of Family Medicine, Walter Sisulu University, Mthatha, South Africa
5 Department of Community Health, University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center, USA
6 Faculty of Medicine, Makerere University, Kampala, Uganda.