Zambian Government Welcomes Healthcare Federation

Apr 21, 2023

The Zambian government welcomed the newly launched Healthcare Federation of Zambia on April 18, 2023 in Lusaka. The federation will facilitate public-private sector dialogue and coordination while being a critical partner to the government in health service delivery.

“The private health sector has emerged as an important resource necessary for attaining Universal Health Coverage, complementing the public sector,” the Honorable Minister of Health, Ms. Sylvia Masebo said.

Ms. Masebo observed that although the private sector plays a central and fundamental role in delivering health products and services in Zambia, a lack of coordination with the Ministry of Health has led to duplication of efforts and wastage of funding, and hindering progress in meeting national and global targets.

Ms. Masebo added that the private sector does not fully participate in delivering essential healthcare and they are often left out of critical training and formulation of health policies.

“This federation has the potential to influence the formulation of health policies that will contribute to effective provision of quality healthcare services,” said Ms. Masebo.

USAID Mission Director Peter Wiebler echoed Ms. Masebo’s sentiments on the importance and realizing the potential of private sector pharmacists, clinics, and commodity suppliers, to contribute additional quality health care services and products to the Zambian people.

“I join the Honorable Minister of Health, Ms. Sylvia Masebo, in welcoming the recently formed Healthcare Federation of Zambia,” said Mr. Wiebler. “ It is an essential partner in informing and delivering more and better health care services throughout the country.”

The USAID Zambia Accessible Markets for Health Project Chief of Party Mrs. Mika Mwambazi Bwembya noted that the formation of the Healthcare Federation of Zambia is part of a growing movement in Africa, where similar country-level federations have been successful in creating a platform for diverse private health players to interact with each other and public health facilities.

“It will provide an opportunity for the private sector to participate and advocate for quality health services and conducive regulatory policies to advance the goal of Universal Health Coverage,” said Mrs. Bwembya.

During a presentation on  Healthcare Federation of Zambia, Chairperson Dr. Shailen Desai explained how the federation will strengthen collaboration between the public and private sectors and strengthen the capacity of private healthcare providers to deliver affordable quality health services and products.

“We want to see a Zambia where everyone has access to quality, equitable, and affordable healthcare services,” said Dr. Desai.

Formally registered in March 2023, Healthcare Federation of Zambia represents more than 200 private hospitals, clinics, pharmacies, and suppliers of health products.

The USAID Zambia Accessible Markets for Health Project, implemented by John Snow Health Zambia (JSH) Ltd in collaboration with JSI, Media365, PharmAccess, and Mopani Mine Hospitals, is instrumental in spear-heading the formation of the Healthcare Federation of Zambia.

Picture credit: All photos by Tmiladzi for JSH