Oxfam shuns private health care at the expense of the poor
Wednesday, April 28, 2010
Having visited several private health clinics in Dar es Salaam last month, I find this particularly shocking. The clinics I visited in very poor areas offer local health services for the first time ever. Previously there were no local services, and a taxi ride to the central government hospital was far too expensive for these people to afford.
Then again, Oxfam’s stance should come as little surprise. Last year they released a paper which, while ignoring private clinics and hospitals, attacked private healthcare facilities in poor parts of the world.
The Centre for Global Development criticised the report in a blog post entitled “Oxfam – this is not how to help the poor”, warning against the harm that such anti-private sector policies could cause. They elucidated:
“The harm is this: in many countries this would leave behind many poor people and those who live in rural areas who, whether we like it or not, turn to the private sector when they fall ill.”
IPN has previously explained the benefits to funding private health facilities instead of government ones and last month this blog reported how the South African government are having to eat their words and utilise the country’s excellent private health facilities.