On Universal Health Coverage Day, SHOPS Plus looks at its efforts to engage the private sector in making quality, respectful health care available to all.
Scaling up mobile-enabled insurance
In Tanzania, SHOPS Plus is working with Edgepoint, Jubilee Insurance, and Vodacom to launch a mobile phone-enabled private health insurance product, Jamii. It will target low-income households, including people living with HIV. Jamii provides benefits to offset costs associated with a hospitalization and offers limited benefits for outpatient care, as a complement to government-sponsored schemes.
Including private providers in UHC initiatives
Three years ago, Senegal launched a national program to achieve UHC. SHOPS Plus will liaise with the Senegalese government and the USAID-funded Health Systems Strengthening and Government Technical Assistance Provider projects to increase the representation of private providers in the country’s initiatives that promote UHC. Project staff will help private providers use government-subsidized mutual health associations (mutuelles) to cover priority health products and services.
Evaluating voucher programs
Voucher programs can contribute to UHC by targeting poor, vulnerable groups to enhance access to private health care providers. In Madagascar, SHOPS Plus researchers are evaluating a successful voucher program that provides contraception for youth. Results will inform the future of the program in Madagascar and other similar programs.
Promoting universal access to family planning
In October, SHOPS Plus convened 30 individuals representing a dozen organizations to discuss the best ways expand access to family planning and sustain its financing under UHC initiatives. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and USAID co-sponsored the one-day meeting, in which donor and implementer organizations shared their insights and evidence.
Through these activities, SHOPS Plus aims to engage the private sector to accelerate progress toward universal health coverage.