In many low- and middle-income countries, lifesaving health products are either unavailable or beyond the reach of the people who need them most.
Understanding the Opportunity Cost, Seizing the Opportunity: Report of the Working Group on Incorporating Economics and Modelling in Global Health Goals and Guidelines
Internationally set goals and guidelines directly influence the setting of health care priorities at the national level, affecting how limited resources are generated and allocated across health care needs. The Working Group on Incorporating Economics and Modelling in Global Health Goals and Guidelines has brought together disease specialists, policymakers, economists, and modelers from national governments, international organizations, and academic institutions across the globe to address these issues, to take stock of current approaches, and make recommendations for better practice.
As low- and middle-income countries shift away from donor support, their challenge will be finding a way to aggregate demand in order to achieve the benefits that the pooled purchasing arrangements of vertical health programs now provide. As a first step in tackling this challenge, much can be learned from a diverse group of pooled procurement initiatives that have developed over the past 40 years in high-, middle-, and low-income countries. This note reviews the rationale and functions of these initiatives, notes their potential benefits and barriers, and draws lessons regarding how best to incorporate pooled pharmaceutical purchasing models into the design and implementation of health financing reforms in countries in transition.