Blood, Donors and Dollars: Rethinking financial sustainability of blood services in Tanzania

Isangula, Kahabi and Brownie, Sharon and Mahimbo, Abela and Kibona, Soloman and Juma, Abdu and Mogela, Deus (2016) Blood, Donors and Dollars: Rethinking financial sustainability of blood services in Tanzania. Global Journal of Medicine and Public Health, 5 (4). pp. 1-7. ISSN 2277--9604

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Abstract or Summary

Collection, processing and distribution of safe blood in Tanzania occurs within a free-for-service context, that is, a collection from non-remunerated blood donors and istributing freely to the needy people through health facilities. The safe blood services in the country appear to be crippled with many challenges and cannot meet the demand for blood and its products. As such, a need for rethinking collection methods, financial models and possible mechanisms for donor remuneration is evident. Methods In this paper, we venture on multi-stakeholder meetings and ongoing discussions regarding the internal mechanisms of safe blood transfusion financing. The intent is to offer a perspective on the considerations for selfsustaining safe blood services in the country and the extent to which they may be implemented or not. Results We suggest that despite huge demand, the external donor dependent financing mechanisms for safe blood services in the country are ineffective. Therefore, we discuss two potential ‘internal’ financing mechanisms that have been identified in recent shareholders forums 1) introducing a blood processing fee accompanied by policy change to allow direct charging of either recipients or hospitals or 2) influencing the introduction of ‘blood services’ within the current insurance schemes. Conclusion We conclude that there is a need for constructing alternative financial mechanisms to sustain the demand of safe blood in the country. We discuss two cost recovery mechanisms, blood processing fee and insurance schemes; however, a warning is noted that their implementation warrants structural adjustments, massive community sensitization and optimum stakeholder engagement to maximize acceptability within the country.

Item Type:Journal article
Keywords that describe the item:Safe Blood, Donors, Transfusion, Health, Tanzania, Financing
Subjects:R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine
Divisions:Schools > Centre for Health & Social Practice
ID Code:7540
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Deposited On:19 Nov 2020 19:55
Last Modified:19 Nov 2020 19:55

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