Financial risks associated with healthcare consumption in Jinja, Uganda

  • M Ruhweza
  • SO Baine
  • V Onama
  • V Basaza
  • G Pariyo


Introduction: Financial access to promotive, preventive, curative and rehabilitative healthcare by every one remains a challenge globally. The requirement to make direct payments at the time of consuming health services is one of the reasons why it persists. In this paper, we present findings on the financial risks households bear as a result of healthcare consumption in one district in Uganda.
Methodology: Using simple random sampling, we selected 384 household heads in 3 health sub districts. A structured questionnaire was to conduct the survey. Focus group discussions and Key Informant interviews were also conducted. Results: Up to 77% (297/384) of households reported making direct payments for healthcare when a household member fell ill, 45% (174/384) did so each time a household member fell ill. Payment for healthcare was associated with employment of the household head in the informal sector (OR 1.6, 95% 1.2-2.1), presence of children OR 1.5, 95% 1.3-1.9 or someone with chronic illness OR 3, 95% 1.5-6 respectively and history of hospitalization (OR 3, 95% 1.7-6.5). Conclusion: A high burden of healthcare needs, disproportionately affect children and women among households in Jinja. Direct payments for healthcare still occur in spite of the abolishment of user fees at public health facilities and tax based financing of health services in Uganda.

African Health Sciences 2009; 9(S2):S86-S89

Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 1680-6905