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Friday, April 26, 2013

Somali government launches universal healthcare plan



Somalia says every Somali citizens will have access to basic healthcare by 2016 under a new government-led strategic plan.

The four-year plan will be a test for the new Somali government’s ability to provide services to its people suffering from two decade of civil war and recurrent famine.

The plan is expected to cost 350 million dollars, 70 to 75 percent of which will be spent on actual health services. It is expected to improve financing, human resources, medicine supply, and infrastructure in the health sector.

On March 21st, the government launched a new Health Sector Strategic Plan for three zones, south-central Somalia, Puntland and Somaliland. This, indicates the government is moving away from the emergency-level health provision that has been the norm in the country for over 20 years.

Kassim also says by generous donations, Mogadishu will have thirty two new intensive care units to tackle the growing emergency cases in the war-torn capital.

The country's healthcare system is virtually destroyed by more than 20 years of conflict during which there was no legitimate government. NGOs, the United Nations, and private sector practitioners was managing the sector during that time.

The U-N statistics shows Somalia has some of the highest rates of maternal mortality in the world, and thousands of infants and children died from easily preventable and treatable conditions such as pneumonia, diarrhoea, malnutrition and measles. The Somali government has recently launched a vaccination campaign against six deadly diseases in the capital Mogadishu.

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