Participatory research on health systems, Kaisipul, Kenya
Participatory research on health systems, Kaisipul, Kenya

EQUINET: Reclaiming resources for health equity in Africa

Health care systems in many African countries are undergoing decentralization, institutional reform and cost recovery. These reforms aim to improve the efficiency and cost-effectiveness of health services. However, high levels of ill health — exacerbated by HIV/AIDS — re-emerging diseases, and inequalities in access to health care persist.

To address this inequity, IDRC has been supporting a regional network on equity in health in the Southern African Development Community since 1998. The Equinet network is a vibrant forum for research, dialogue, learning, and critical analysis to support the regional community in its commitment to secure equity in health.

Research now focuses on various strategies for reclaiming resources for health so that poor households can access a fairer share of national resources. This includes:
  • gathering evidence to support fair financing in health,
  • monitoring progress toward health equity in country and regional Equity Watches
  • building capacity to mobilize and allocate resources
  • supporting learning on community and health worker roles in building primary health care oriented health systems
  • engaging with global-level actors on regional priorities for health equity.
Many research results are available on the Equinet website, including "Equity Watches" reports that assess progress towards equity in health in Zambia and Zimbabwe.

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