World Bank support for health care in decline

The World Bank’s Independent Evaluation Group (IEG) questions the overall commitment of the WB to achieving vital improvements in global health in its report on the Bank’s programmes in the health care sector over the past decade.

“Nearly three-quarters of developing countries are off track … for achieving the MDG of reducing under-five mortality,” one of the primary global health goals, the report says. Despite this, the World Bank supports a far smaller proportion  of overall spending for international health, nutrition and family planning programmes than it did a decade ago: 6 per cent now, down from 18 per cent in the 1990s.

The IEG report finds that project monitoring and evaluation in the health sector are weak or nonexistent. It notes that the IFC, the Bank’s private sector arm, has made “support to private investment in health one its strategic priorities” but has had limited social impact.

“IFC’s investments in hospitals have targeted middle and upper-income groups” despite the Bank’s claim to give priority to pro-poor investments.

Source :   Upstream Journal

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