Pan African Medical Journal

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Foreign aid or foreign investments: Call for a paradigm shift in mentality and nomenclature

OO Oleribe, O Nwanwanyu


Funding for health care programs has over the years been an important challenge for health and health care services. However with the advent of
financing, part of this problem was resolved. Through these investments, lives were saved, many destinies recovered and some obsolete systems
reengineered. Major proofs of these expenditures are number of people reached and sometimes number of sites opened/supported, which in
several cases, are not entirely verifiable. Sustainable development from these funds is limited, and far and in between. This is despite the fact that
supports for health care and health care services have been ongoing for more than 60 years. As long as these funds are seen as aids to developing countries, they will continue to fail to achieve their primary objectives. But looking at these as investments in supported countries will significantly improve the outcome, health system impacts, as well as engineer  sustainable health system strengthening and improvement. Such a re-branding will reduce the politics of support, improve effectiveness and efficiency in the use of the resources, and empower receiving nations towards better health systems.
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