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Comparison of health care financing arrangements in Egypt and Cuba : lessons for health reform in Egypt

Gericke CA

Diskussionspapier 2004/3, Technische Universität Berlin, Fakultät Wirtschaft und Management, Berlin




Egypt and Cuba are both lower-middle income countries with a history of socialist rule and which have embarked on economic liberalisation since the 1990s. Health status in both countries is extremely different. While life expectancy of the Cuban population in all age-groups is similar to that of many high-income industrialised countries, health status in Egypt is relatively poor compared to countries with a similar national income and compared to regional comparators. Health care systems in both countries are also markedly different, although both share a socialist origin with centralised administration of funding and delivery, funding mainly from general taxation, and state-employed providers. In this article, health care financing mechanisms in both countries are analysed on their effectiveness, efficiency, and equity, with the objective of identifying the determinants of success in the Cuban health care system from which valuable lessons for current health reforms in Egypt may be derived. 3


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