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Financing public healthcare institutions in Ghana

Mercy Akosua Akortsu (Department of Finance, University of Ghana Business School, Legon, Ghana)
Patience Aseweh Abor (Department of Public Administration and Health Services Management, University of Ghana Business School, Legon, Ghana)

Journal of Health Organization and Management

ISSN: 1477-7266

Article publication date: 24 May 2011

Abstract

Purpose

The financing of healthcare services has been of a major concern to all governments in the face of increasing healthcare costs. For developing countries, where good health is considered a poverty reduction strategy, it is imperative that the hospitals used in the delivery of healthcare services are well financed to accomplish their tasks. The purpose of this paper is to examine how public hospitals in Ghana are financed, and the challenges facing the financing modes adopted.

Design/methodology/approach

To achieve the objectives of the study, one major public healthcare institution in Ghana became the main focus.

Findings

The findings of the study revealed that the main sources of financing the public healthcare institution are government subvention, internally‐generated funds and donor‐pooled funds. Of these sources, the internally generated fund was regarded as the most reliable, and the least reliable was the donor‐pooled funds. Several challenges associated with the various financing sources were identified. These include delay in receipt of government subvention, delay in the reimbursement of services provided to subscribers of health insurance schemes, influence of government in setting user fees, and the specifications to which donor funds are put.

Originality/value

The findings of this study have important implications for improving the financing of public healthcare institutions in Ghana. A number of recommendations are provided in this regard.

Keywords

Citation

Akosua Akortsu, M. and Aseweh Abor, P. (2011), "Financing public healthcare institutions in Ghana", Journal of Health Organization and Management, Vol. 25 No. 2, pp. 128-141. https://doi.org/10.1108/14777261111134383

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited