R4D joins launch of the Lancet Global Health Commission on Primary Health Care Financing report

April 5, 2022

WASHINGTON, D.C. — As a member of the Lancet Global Health Commission on Financing Primary Health Care (PHC), R4D’s Cheryl Cashin, Ph.D., joined fellow commission members to announce the launch of a new report on the current landscape of financing for PHC. In the report, The Lancet Global Health Commission on financing primary health care: putting people at the centre, the Commission argues that all countries need to both invest more and invest better in PHC by mobilizing additional pooled public funding, allocating and protecting sufficient funds for PHC, and incentivizing providers to maintain the health of the populations they serve. 

“The global community has been advocating for greater priority for primary health care, at least since the 1978 Alma-Ata Declaration. But, in nearly 45 years, we have not seen the needle move very much toward greater priority for primary health care in terms of how funds are allocated and especially how they’re used in low- and middle-income countries,” said Dr. Cashin. “That’s why I’m so excited to have been part of the Lancet Global Health Commission on Financing Primary Health Care. The Commission did a deep exploration of financing for primary health care across many countries and regions of the world. It also looked at the political economy of primary health care financing and how to navigate that. This report offers some very bold, practical and new steps countries can take to break the vicious cycle of underfinancing primary health care systems.” 

Gina Lagomarsino, R4D’s president and CEO, added: “I’m thrilled about Dr. Cashin’s participation in the Lancet Global Health Commission. A key pillar of R4D’s approach is to generate evidence — like this report — to strengthen health and education systems, but we also go beyond this. Through our many global and regional learning networks and platforms, we’re supporting change agents to adapt and apply this new knowledge.” 

In the report, the Commission outlines five key recommendations, including: 

  1. People-centered financing arrangements for PHC should have public resources provide the bulk of primary health care funding. 
  2. Spending more and spending better on PHC requires a whole-of-government approach involving all ministries whose remit interacts with health and requires the support of civil society. 
  3. Each country should plot out a strategic pathway toward people-centered financing for PHC that reflects the attributes outlined above, including investments in supporting basic health system functions.
  4. Global technical agencies should reform the way PHC expenditure data are collected, classified, and reported to enable longitudinal and cross-country analyses of achievement of key primary health care financing goals.
  5. Academic researchers, technical experts and policymakers, among others, should pursue a robust research agenda on financing arrangements for PHC that place people at the center to support achievement of key primary health-care financing goals. 

The Lancet Global Health Commission on Financing PHC includes 22 experts from 15 countries — including academic researchers, technical advisers, and national-level policymakers and health systems experts. 

To read the full report, click here. 


About Results for Development
Results for Development (R4D) is a leading non-profit global development partner. We collaborate with change agents — government officials, civil society leaders and social innovators — supporting them as they navigate complex change processes to achieve large-scale, equitable outcomes in health, education and nutrition. We work with country leaders to diagnose challenges, co-create, innovate and implement solutions built on evidence and diverse stakeholder input, and engage in learning to adapt, iterate and improve. We also strengthen global, regional and country ecosystems to support country leaders with expertise, evidence, and innovations. R4D helps country leaders solve their immediate challenges today, while also strengthening systems and institutions to address tomorrow’s challenges. And we share what we learn so others around the world can achieve results for development too. www.R4D.org   

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