MPs want more allocation for health docket
The underfunding in the health sector was exposed following the withdrawal of the Health Pooled Fund last year.
Members of Parliament (MPs) want the annual allocation for the health sector increased by 15 percent.
Parliamentary Committee on Health said they were looking forward to a bigger allocation for the critical health sector in the fiscal year 2022-2023 budget but unfortunately, it was decreased to 2.4 percent, instead.
Dr. Benjamin Malek Lier, a member of the Committee on Health, wondered why the executive always brings the budget to the parliament with no room to make adjustments, from within the house.
“Why do you always put a ceiling on the health?” he posed.
Lier raised the concern during the 10th Anniversary of Child Survival Call to Action last week
“That is the question we are putting on the table so that in the coming budget, the executive can try to increase the budget for health and education because these are very important services for our people. These are important services,” Dr. Malek added.
The South Sudan Health Pooled Fund which was funding a bigger chunk of health budget withdrew their support last year.
Dr Malek the pullout has left a big gap to be filled by government.
“The Health Pooled Fund was providing 90 percent of the incentives (for health workers) while also supplying medical equipment, but they withdrew their services about a year ago, leaving big a void,” National Minister of Health, Yolanda Awel Deng noted last week.
Meanwhile, Aya Benjamin Warrille who was speaking on behalf of the Ministry of Health at a separate event, that health sector is seriously underfunded.
The health committee in the parliament is in charge of dealing with health, sickness, and disease prevention in the country, including hospitals, primary health care, patients’ rights, healthcare system inspection, treatment subsidies in general practice, pharmacies, medicines, health ethics and research, and substance abuse.
The committee’s duties and oversight can be divided into two primary areas: handling of Bills and motions within the committee’s remit and ongoing parliamentary analysis of the administration of the government’s health policies carried out by the respective ministers.
“The Health Pooled Fund was providing 90 percent of the incentives (for health workers) while also supplying medical equipment, but they withdrew their services about a year ago, left big a void,” Yolanda Awel Deng – National Minister of Health.