If you are in greater East Africa. You are budget sensitive, and are about to fall ill. Move to Tanzania! The data is speaking again. This time it talks about the variance in the cost of healthcare across Greater East Africa and Zambia.
The healthcare markets in this study are: South Sudan, Somali-land, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Tanzania, and Zambia.
Firstly, the cost of health in Kenya ranks the highest in the entire region. In Kenya, you will have to part with $1,100 for admission while in Tanzania at only $158 for an average admission cost. In other words, the amount of money to spend as admission cost in a hospital in Kenya could buy a holiday in Dubai. It may be cheaper to book a medical trip to Zanzibar and enjoy the sun and sand than to book a hotel.
This analogy between hospitals and hospitality could offer an insight into the cost differences. It may be fair to assume that macro-economic factors such as the cost of living and average wages drive up the cost of healthcare. This would explain why Somali-land and South Sudan have relatively high costs of healthcare.
The other hidden issue is investments in healthcare. It is quite possible that Kenyan hospitals have private sector invested in more in their facilities and infrastructure.
The data also shows that Kenyans don’t fall ill more than their neighbors. The average Kenyan makes about 2.6 visits to a doctor every year. This number doesn’t change in both Uganda and Somali-land that come in at 2.5 and 2.4 respectively.
Tanzanians who coincidentally enjoy the lowest cost of healthcare also make the fewest visits to a hospital at about 1.38 visits per person per year. South Sudan and Zambia follow closely each with about 1.5 per patient per year. This may allude to a generally healthier population or a general health aversion. The data is yet to disclose what the cause.
The more interesting data point however is that the Rwandese visit hospitals more than their counterparts. The average Rwandese patient makes 5 outpatient visits per year. Again, we’re not certain if this is due to accessibility of health-care services or an over reporting of illness. The jury is still out on this.
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