A recent World Bank (WB) evaluation report indicates that Rwanda’s health performance-based financing system is an effective measure that is capable of improving healthcare in less developed countries.
The study dubbed “Paying Primary Health Care Centres for Performance in Rwanda,” notes that this system is fairly new to the developing world.
“It rewards providers financially for providing care with quality and frequency based on “indicators” like visits to the facility, checkups, vaccinations or treatments, and formal quality control evaluations.”
According to Health Minister, Dr. Richard Sezibera, this system of payment was recently introduced as an incentive that will boost the performance of medical officials in the country.
“We decided that on top of what these officials earn as basic salary, more money be given based on extra effort made to improve in services in indicators such as timely immunization and cesarean deliveries,” he said.
“More payment is actually given to those who work upcountry in a bid to encourage health officials, especially doctors, to work in those areas so that quality care reaches the entire population.”
According to the study, it was concluded that the performance based financing system is directly related to increased access to quality medical care.
The report further adds that this is so, particularly when the specific indicator depends more on the efforts of the provider rather than on the decisions of the patient.
“The higher the bonus attached to a particular service through this system, the more initiative health care providers took in performing it,” officials add.
Christel Vermeersch of the World Bank’s Human Development Network, and one of the lead evaluators of the new Rwanda study noted that;
“What’s so gratifying about this study is that it helps governments answer the question of how to use their money to the best advantage when they only have five dollars to spend on better health for every woman and child in the country.”