Health Budgets Compared

The UK Government has allocated £122b to the 2010 health budget. So for each of its 62m population that equates to £1,956 per annum. That’s a lot and is one of the reasons for the current NHS review.

The Government of Uganda has allocated £482m on a purchasing power parity basis. (£1 in Uganda can buy what it would take £2.50 to buy in the UK.) There are 33m people living in Uganda, so that equates to just £14.43 per person, per annum. That’s clearly not enough and one of the reasons for the poor delivery of health services.

That means in the UK we allocate more than 135 times the budget per person compared to Uganda.

The UK allocates 18% of its total budget to the health sector; in Uganda the percentage is 10%. Some are saying that perhaps 18% in the UK is too much and some say that the GoU should honour its 2001 Abuja pledge to allocate 15% to the health sector. Whilst that would be a 50% increase in real terms, one can see quite quickly that it would still leave the Uganda per capita allocation very small compared to the UK.

If both governments allocated 15% of national budget to the health sector a person living in the UK would be allocated £1,674, whilst in Uganda it would be 78 times less than that, just £21.60.

So what should be done…

There are of course no easy answers but we will explore a few options in future posts.

About Kevin Duffy

Interim Management and Consulting - Global Healthcare Development. Kevin has over ten years of senior management experience in the delivery of healthcare services in Africa and South Asia. His current focus is on the strategic development of policy, guidance, and tools to help healthcare organisations achieve sustainable impact – balancing the need to become financially sustainable, with the mission of ensuring equitable access to affordable healthcare services.
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