Good Essay On Lending Institutions, Health Care, And Human Capital
Combined influences on developments in global financing structures, involving health care funding, has revived a need for rethinking the relationships between institutions like World Bank, and the IMF. Countries such as Kenya are greatly impacted by lending policies, health care challenges, and human capital issues. According to Knowledge Ecology International (2015) sources the World Bank gained an influence in African nations during the 1980s, as a result for market-price slumps, leaving countries in “economic crisis, unable to repay mounting foreign debt”(“World Bank and Denial of Africa’s Right to Health”). Naturally, in desperation, African countries turned to the entities of the IMF and World Bank. These lending institutions were only too happy to accommodate them provided their debtors danced to their music, in terms of aligning their footsteps to “certain economic reforms in return” (“World Bank and Denial of Africa’s Right to Health”). The reforms are known as ‘structural adjustment’ programs, which shall be mentioned later in this essay. The purpose herein seeks to explore various aspects of lending institutions, health care, and human capital around three main venues. The major three ideas include: (a) Exploring whether lending institutions like World Bank, and IMF are helping or hindering, (b) Discussing examples in four substantive ways how a healthy populace can improve the economy, and (c) Ascertain the degree of Kenyan leadership has used foreign aid to bolster its healthcare system.
Funding opportunities, (or entrapments), from lending institutions like the World Bank and IMF may in fact be helping as well as hindering the socio-economic plight, or political development of the country Kenya for example, because of certain conditions. First of all, a great number of the healthcare sector facilities in Kenya are privately run. According to a peer-reviewed research article by Burger, Kopf, Spreng, Yoong, and Sood (2012) these are the extant conditions in Sub-Saharan Africa overall by “approximately 50 percent.” Burger et al. (2012) explained that among those private healthcare providers in Kenya “40 percent” of them are facing dire constraints, in terms of the financial barriers they face. Much of the problem persists in the factor that their privatized health care setups are extremely poorly integrated into the healthcare system. Obviously, lending institutions such as the World Bank and IMF operate through specified channels of organizational operations. See the problem? So one of the key problems in how ‘funding’ from either institution (World Bank and IMF) hinders the socio-economic growth and political development is the critical monies never reaches the destinations that can most benefit, overall.
The World Bank had been helpful in coming to the financial rescue of certain African countries, like Kenya. But other problems hurt their social and political development. For example, Berger et al. (2012) further explain that levels of corruption among government officials and leadership, and crime, have acted as impediments to clear pathways to success. After scanning the Internet in researching this topic, Microsoft had recently made an effort to train Kenyan Cabinet members to better utilized electronic software, to manage outcomes. However a “poor public infrastructure” still abides, and a disturbingly high percentage of critical sectors associated with (and essential to) healthcare operations function on paper-based systems (“Constraints to Growth, Private Health Sector Kenya”). A main hindrance involves the policy structure of lending.
For example, the so-called ‘structural adjustment programs’ of the IMF (as de jure and de facto policy operations) have measurably hurt nations like Kenya. The evidence for this follows. Maynard, Shircliff, and Restivo (2012), in an article in the International Journal of Sociology, indicated that the results of some researcher in 2008 “demonstrate that countries implementing structural adjustment programs [IMF] had higher rates of TB* (*tuberculosis) rates” (p. 6). In terms of any healthcare monetary lending, the social and economic situations are being damaged – rather than helped. Furthermore, Maynard et al. (2012) suggest that research identified how this kind of policy in lending practices by the IMF “has detrimental effects on government’s ability to provide access to basic needs” like clean water, and “medical technology” in poorer nations (p. 5). Therefore, this exasperates disease, child/infant, and maternal mortality. A Health Policy Action (2010) report says that IMF program requirements also place requirements that “budgets should be balanced,” with low deficits (“The IMF, the Global Crisis for Health”). In terms of human capital, although Kenyan’s population is over 43 million people, there is a serious shortage in properly trained medical personnel. The Berger team demonstrate credibility since they gathered data from 300 health care facilities, in Ghana and Kenya.
Moving forward, there are at least four substantive ways in which a healthy population strengthens a country, such as Kenya. First, physically healthy members of society can be pro-active players in taking roles to influence better policy outcomes that benefit their nation, rather than harm it. Secondly, healthy populations connect in crucial ways to the health of mothers and babies. The Harmonization for Health for Africa (HHA) (2010) shows in a statistical pie-chart (Figure 2.1: Sub-Saharan Africa’s disproportionate burden of ill health) that about 50 percent of all maternal deaths in the world situate in this locale. Also, a firmly reported 50 percent of all children aged under-five deaths come from this part of Africa. So a focus on women and children conditional improvements for health can help to begin a positive cycle, of healthy citizens who can build up the society. Thirdly, healthy populations worry less about basic survival needs of their children and families, thereby leaving time to focus on better education and innovative socio-political and economic growth development. Fourthly, HHA (2010) explains that “Good health is not only an outcome of, but also a foundation for development. Healthy individuals are more productive, earn more, save more, invest more, consume more, and work longer, all of which have a positive impact on the gross domestic product (GDP) of a nation.” Their findings in one study proved a correlation of a raised GDP by 4 percent – in direct association with one left expectancy. Perhaps those who understand these realities, realized the potential wealth of human capital in resources Kenya – and the continent – possess.
One huge plus in the economic benefits strengthened by a healthy population is that lowered healthcare costs results for families. If lowered healthcare-related costs ensue for families, then the entire community will be more prosperous – both in private and public sectors. Given the substantial percentage of private healthcare sectors in countries like Kenya, you can see how much better the outcome would be. As households incur less debt, a macro-level economic benefit could emerge. While it is difficult to arrive at a definitive answer to ascertain the degree to which the leadership of Kenya has used foreign aid to improve its healthcare system, there are some clues. According to a World Bank (2015) Kenya benefited from a ‘Health Sector’ project of a total of US$ 61 million, as approved in 2013. Of those funds “non-bank sources” in the millions from the United States comprised that package (“Kenya Health Sector Additional Financing”). Other inconsistencies and complications in political stability and leadership corruption make it difficult to say.
But according to the WHO, more concrete figures were available. Only “4.6 percent” of Kenya’s GDP was “invested in its health care system,” which was learned is fragmented (“Struggles Facing Kenyan Healthcare”). So it is hard to tell to what degree the leadership has used and implemented foreign aid funding for healthcare. Additionally, violent political eruptions like the blowback in 2011 revolving around the Presidential election and corruption, caused disruptions and impediments to keeping healthcare services, and delivery going smoothly.
The situation calls for ongoing surveillance and research, in order to keep abreast of this complex topic.
Burger, N.E., Kopf, D., Spreng, C.P., Yoong, J., & Sood, N. (2012). Healthy firms: Constraints
2012. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0027885*
Child Fund. (2015). Struggles facing the Kenyan health care system [Data file]. Retrieved from
Health Poverty Action – Action for Global Health UK. (2010, February). The IMF, the global
Crisis and human resources for health [Data file]. Retrieved from
HHA Harmonization for Health for Africa. (2010). The case for strengthening systems for better health outcomes [Data file]. Retrieved from file:///C:/Users/Use%20this%20one/Downloads/investing_health_africa_2011-04-28.pdf
Knowledge Ecology International. (2015). The World Bank and the denial of Africa’s right to health [Data file]. Retrieved from http://www.cptech.org/ip/health/africa/aa-wb-health.html
Maynard, G., Shircliff, E., & Restivo, M. (2012). IMF structural adjustment, public health spending, and tuberculosis. International Journal of Sociology, 42(2), 5-27.
World Bank. (2015). Kenya health sector support project – additional financing [Data file].
Retrieved from http://www.worldbank.org/projects/P144197?lang=en
(2008, March 6). Kenya and the World Bank. Wall Street Journal – Eastern Edition. p. A14.
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