Providing for Health

What does P4H do?

Focus on country support

The focus of the P4H network is on country support.
The bulk of P4H’s efforts and resources are allocated to support low- and middle-income countries in their efforts to reach Social Health Protection (SHP) and Universal Coverage (UC);
Thus, this implies for the P4H network :

  • Support in improving access to essential quality health services and financial risk protection – particularly for the poor – thus contributing to Millennium Development Goals 1, 4, 5 and 6.
  • Support to global and regional events (conferences, workshops, etc.) related to SHP complements ongoing country support.

Focus on Social Health Protection

P4H promotes and supports the development of sustainable, equitable and efficient health systems for social health protection.

Issues of out-of-pocket spending, catastrophic payments and limited financial access to services are all linked to the way health sectors are being financed, i.e. how funds are generated (how much and how equitable), are being administered and used for paying health services (purchasing and provision).
Thus, this implies that the P4H network supports countries:

  • To reduce out-of-pocket payments (see World Health Assembly resolution WHA58.33);
  • To raise sufficient funds domestically for health;
  • To improve efficiency and equity in the use of resources;
  • To harmonize economic and social objectives;
  • To integrate health financing reform with health sector reform, and ensure that the development of national health plans through processes such as the International Health Partnership (IHP+) are consistent with and complement the development of health financing strategies, and vice versa;
  • To link health financing reform with a country’s social protection framework.

Technical support of highest international standard

P4H recognizes that the transition process to achieve universal coverage and social health protection is complex and requires both technical and political solutions. To do so, P4H provide unbiased, state-of-the-art support that draws on the mandates, strengths and experiences of each partner organization.

Given that all P4H partners, in the words of World Health Assembly resolution WHA58.33, “recognize that, when managing the transition to universal coverage, each option will need to be developed within the particular macroeconomic, sociocultural and political context of each country”, each country receives flexible, tailored and integrated support according to the country’s situation and support requirements.

This implies that the P4H network adopts a comprehensive and strategic approach that takes various perspectives : social, developmental, political and economic into account, and ensures inclusive stakeholder involvement and social dialogue in order to understand different values and interests.

P4H network which must meet the highest international quality standards supports countries:

  • To develop and implement plans for scaling up capacity at country level where necessary;
  • To engage in an active and effective process of change management;
  • To monitor and evaluate the effectiveness and success of respective reform measures;
  • To “…plan the transition to universal coverage of their citizens so as to contribute to meeting the needs of the population for health care and improving its quality, to reducing poverty, to attaining internationally agreed development goals, including those contained in the United Nations Millennium Declaration, and to achieving health for all”; (words of World Health Assembly resolution WHA58.33)

Each country’s choice of strategic health financing options and type of SHP system is an informed choice.
P4H does not promote any specific approaches or tools.

Networking for better coordination and alignment

Guided by the principles of the Paris Declaration on Aid Effectiveness P4H country work is conduct by the principles of ownership, harmonization and alignment.
This implies that:

  • P4H partners promote a country-led and country-owned transition process towards UC and SHP (ownership);
  • P4H partners provide integrated and coordinated support at different levels, bringing together different work streams and messages, creating complementarities and synergies, and promoting a decentralized support model in which interaction between P4H partners and governments takes place largely through regional or country-based offices (harmonization);
  • P4H partners foster the alignment of support in the area of health financing and SHP with national health financing strategies and social protection frameworks (alignment);
  • P4H work closely with IHP+ to ensure that national health plans and strategies, and national financing plans and strategies for UC and SHP, are consistent and are integrated as much as possible, and that missions to support countries on these two areas are streamlined as much as possible.