The Government of Maldives and UNICEF jointly launched
the Primary Health
Care (PHC) Investment Case this morning. The special event was led by Minister
of Health, Hon. Ahmed Naseem in the presence of the UNICEF Representative to
Maldives Dr. Edward Addai and representatives from UN agencies in Maldives.
Primary Health Care serves as the entry point to
equitable, accessible and high-quality healthcare services for all. The costed
PHC Investment Case launched today provides us with a strategic road map for
strengthening PHC in the country including improving efficiency in financial
and human resource allocation and use, enhancing health infrastructure and
building the capacity of the health sector workforce to deliver quality PHC
services to all Maldivian communities.
Maldives still faces many challenges ranging from
geographical dispersion to the demographic transition in ensuring equitable
healthcare services to its communities. Investing in primary healthcare is
critical, to ensure every child survives and thrives, and to safeguard the
health and wellbeing of the whole community.
The evidence in the PHC Investment Case shows
that investing in primary healthcare yields substantial returns leading to a
reduction in overall healthcare system costs. For every 1 MVR invested in
scaling up PHC interventions, 16 MVR (1 USD) is gained. The development of the
PHC Investment Case calls for enhanced collaborative efforts to strengthen our
PHC system and also lays the foundation for shaping the national policies and
programs to expedite Maldives’ progress towards Universal Health Coverage (UHC)
Speaking at the event, the Minister of Health, Hon.
Ahmed Naseem noted:
“The primary healthcare investment case offers a
transformative perspective on investing in PHC. It presents a roadmap for
gradually increasing the allocation of the health sector budget to primary
healthcare until 20% of the budget is channelled towards achieving primary
healthcare outcomes. This visionary approach seeks to revolutionize our
healthcare system within a reasonable timeframe.”
In line with this, the UNICEF Representative Dr. Edward
Addai noted that Maldives is doing very well with public health achievements,
however, he also stated that Maldives could still do better. He also reaffirmed
UNICEF’s commitment to do more together with the Ministry of Health and
partners to translate the Investment Case into action and to improve the
efficiency and effectiveness of the health sector.