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Yemen Hosts a Technical Training Workshop on NHA for Gulf States, April 23-27, 2005

Participants at the technical training workshop in YemenNational Health Accounts (NHA) has been a collaborative effort supported by USAID, WHO, the EU and the World Bank around the world for the past ten years. This global tool, designed for health sector policymakers and managers, provides a framework for measuring total (public, private and donor) national health expenditures. Its goal is to provide valuable information for improving health system performance at the policy level. It can also assist in the monitoring and evaluation of the efficiency and effectiveness of resources spent on health care interventions.

In collaboration with the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), the WHO, and the EC, USAID/Yemen provided technical assistance and support to a five-day regional workshop on NHA. Participants from Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Oman, Qatar, Iraq and Yemen represented ministries of finance, planning and health, and central statistics organizations of their countries. The training, provided by experts from PHRplus and WHO, opened with a conceptual overview of NHA and its policy implications, then led participants through the data collection, organization and analysis. The workshop concluded with presentations from the Saudi and Yemen NHA teams.

Through USAID support the Yemen team produced the first NHA in 1998. The main conclusions from this report showed government spending at 35%; donor spending at 8%; and out of pocket expenditures on health equaled 57%. Two thirds of the out of pocket spending was on drugs, mostly private pharmacies. Cost sharing represented less than 1% revenue in public facilities. These findings resulted in formalization of cost-sharing at public facilities, de-emphasis of new facilities and equipment, and decentralized planning and management. Results from the 2003 NHA, also supported by USAID/Yemen, will be available in June 2005.

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