Development Assistance for Health and Government Health Spending

PLoS Medicine
(Accessed 12 May 2012)

Does Development Assistance for Health Really Displace Government Health Spending? Reassessing the Evidence
Rajaie Batniji, Eran Bendavid Essay, published 08 May 2012

Summary Points
– At the core of the current aid debate is the question of whether development assistance for health provided to developing country governments increases health expenditures.

– It has recently been suggested that development assistance for health to governments leads to a displacement of government spending, reinforcing skepticism about health aid.

– Here we examine a database of public financing for health from 1995 to 2006 and demonstrate that prior conclusions drawn from these data are unstable and driven by outliers.

– While government spending may be displaced by development assistance for health in some settings, the evidence is not robust and is highly variable across countries. We recommend