The African Union Commission joined the Government of the Republic of Malawi at a high-level policy dialogue on health financing whereby commitment to domestic resource mobilisation for health and the “Addis Ababa Commitment towards Shared Responsibility and Global ‎Solidarity for ‎Increased Health Financing Declaration” (AU Assembly ALM ‎Declaration) was reiterated.

The Government of Malawi spends only about K9, 900 to meet each person’s health needs every year, against the World Health Organisation (WHO) recommendation of K86, 000. The low domestic health spending is said to be one of the country’s setbacks in attaining Universal Health Coverage (UHC).

In response to insufficient regional investment in healthcare, the President of Malawi, H.E. Dr. Lazarus McCarthy Chakwera, joined fellow African Heads of State at the African Union (AU) Summit in 2019 to instantiate Africa’s commitment to sustainable healthcare through the AU Assembly ALM Declaration. Complementing Malawi’s health financing policies, The AU Assembly ALM Declaration provides a roadmap for countries to mobilise domestic resources for health and use existing resources more effectively.

Dr Lamboly Kumboneki, a representative from the SADC Secretariat said, “The National Dialogue is an opportunity to both feed into and draws from the experience and knowledge of regional peers as Malawi advances in the implementation of the ALM Declaration, including the ALM’s Health Financing Tracker. African countries, working with development and private sector partners, must take decisive policy action to increase and maintain their health spending and stay on track to critical health goals like SDG3, achieving UHC and the ALM Declaration.”

Maziko Matemba, the Executive Director at Health and Rights Education Programme (HREP) Malawi, said, “Self-sustaining healthcare systems are at the core of Malawi’s developmental success. Our leaders have been working to improve our healthcare systems over the years. Coming together as stakeholders across different sectors to strategize on Malawi’s healthcare system in a collaborative and committed way will transform our country and deliver the health outcomes our people deserve.”

Shu-Shu Tekle-Haimanot, the Senior Manager of Advocacy Health Financing at Global Fund, said, “Prioritizing domestic health is one of the best investments African countries can make to secure the vision for a prosperous and peaceful Africa. The future of Africa depends on its people. To make progress on the path of sustainability requires that the AU Member States make substantial incremental increases in domestic investment in health every year.”

The Government of Malawi convened the event, together with the Southern African Development Community (SADC), with support from the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria.