Wednesday, November 24, 2010

100 million made poor by medical bills

In 2000, African heads of state committed to spend 15% of government funds on health. So far three countries (Liberia, Rwanda and the United Republic of Tanzania) have achieved this. An average of US$ 44 per capita is required to ensure access to even a small set of quality health services in low income countries. Many struggle to do this. Today, 31 countries spend less than US$ 35 per person on health.

Health bills push 100 million people into poverty each year. "No one in need of health care should have to risk financial ruin as a result," said Dr Margaret Chan, Director-General of WHO.

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