Purchasing power of civil servant health workers in Mozambique

  • F Ferrinho
  • M Amaral
  • G Russo
  • P Ferrinho
Keywords: Purchasing power, civil servants, low-income countries, human resources for health, Mozambique, health sector, salary

Abstract

Background: Health workers’ purchasing power is an important consideration in the development of strategies for health workforce development. This work explores the purchasing power variation of Mozambican public sector health workers, between 1999 and 2007. In general, the calculated purchasing power increased for most careers under study, and the highest percentage increase was observed for the lowest remuneration careers, contributing in this way for a relative reduction in the difference between the higher and the lower salaries.
Methods: This was done through a simple and easy-to-apply methodology to estimate salaries’ capitalization rate, by means of the accumulated inflation rate, after taking wage revisions into account. All the career categories in the Ministry of Health and affiliated public sector institutions were considered.
Results: Health workers’ purchasing power is an important consideration in the development of strategies for health workforce development. This work explores the purchasing power variation of Mozambican public sector health workers, between 1999 and 2007. In general, the calculated purchasing power increased for most careers under study, and the highest percentage increase was observed for the lowest remuneration careers, contributing in this way for a relative reduction in the difference between the higher and the lower salaries.
Conclusion: These results seem to contradict a commonly held assumption that health sector pay has deteriorated over the years, and with substantial damage for the poorest. Further studies appear to be needed to design a more accurate methodology to better understand the evolution and impact of public sector health workers’ remunerations across the years.
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eISSN: 1937-8688