By Ndidi Chukwu
Insufficient or poorly spent health budgets across Africa has been identified as a major challenge among African Nations, which translates to poor outcomes in health programs within the continent. Africa Health Budget Network, (AHBN) says Governments can be held accountable to the varying outcomes in the world of which Africa records very little successes. “accessing acceptable, high quality health care is a fundamental right of every human being. Although health across the world has improved dramatically since the Millennium, too many adults and children still die from preventable causes across Africa, and inequity in health outcomes and access has persisted or increased in the face of average gains” said AHBN Cordinator, Dr Aminu Magashi Garba.
His comment came at the launch of the maiden edition of ‘Budget Bites’, the newsletter of the Africa Health Budget Network, a health budget advocacy tool, for thousands of organizations across Africa in Abuja. Magashi said, “Health budget advocacy in each of our countries has the power to change this state of affairs by making our governments accountable for insufficient or poorly spent budgets”
“We are a group of African and global organizations and individuals already using or wishing to use budget advocacy as a tool to improve health service delivery in Africa.” He urged members to make good use of the tool which is accessible and handy.
The network has three strands of work:
• connecting members to formal training opportunities, events and tools
• promoting learning and sharing within the network
• applying coordinated and focused pressure on African leaders with respect to their health financing commitments.
“I use this medium to welcome you to our network and our newsletter packed with exciting news and information on health budget across Africa” he said.