By Confidente Reporter
NAMIBIA needs to accelerate its on-going efforts to reduce the burden of communicable diseases, non-communicable diseases and injuries targeting people living in remote areas that are difficult to access, the World Health Organisation (WHO) has said.
WHO, in its report released recently also notes that Namibia’s health status remains low compared to what is required of the country to meet the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
The global health body also notes that the country’s health status is commensurate with that of its economic classification of being an upper middle-income country.
Namibia has the 22nd largest total GDP in the WHO African region representing 0.69 percent of the total GDP but the seventh highest GDP per capita (US$4 770 in current prices) based on 2015 estimates.
“Namibia is the highest performer in the region for financial risk protection dimension of outcomes. Overall utilisation of health and health related services to reach the SDGs is 61 percent of what is feasible in the region, higher than the regional average of 48 percent. Compared with other upper middle-income countries, the country utilisation is higher for SDG 3 service coverage, financial risk protection and health security,” says WHO.
While commending the country for having a health care system performance appropriate for its classification, WHO pointed out to the country’s failure to ensure its entire population has easy access to health care services.
“Across system performance monitoring domains, relative performance is highest for quality of care, lowest for access to services. Tangible system investments are higher than regional averages, apart from health infrastructure where it is below expectations,” the report states.
The report also states that Namibia needs to share lessons with other countries in improving its health care financial risk protection.
“Accelerate on-going interventions to address SDG 3 service coverage and health security focusing on the hard to reach populations. Introduce innovative approaches to improve non-SDG 3 service coverage health determinants for all populations. Improve information availability, particularly for service availability and service responsiveness. Accelerate strategies in improving quality of care and effective demand for services specifically targeting hard to reach populations and introduce innovative strategies to scale up investment in health infrastructure.”
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