Health care in Nigeria: Challenges and recommendations

RTI Fights NTDs follow srudents from Atu governemnt school in Calabar, Nigeria recieve medicines for NTDs during mass drug administration
Social and financial risk protection for poor and vulnerable populations is a major development and policy issue across the globe. There are numerous definitions of social protection. In the context of health, social protection is defined as programmes and measures aimed at removing financial barriers preventing access to health care services and protecting poor and vulnerable populations from the impoverishing effects of medical expenditures.[2] Financial risk protection is a key component of universal health coverage (UHC) and the health system goal of ensuring access to quality health care services without suffering financial hardship.[3] Social and financial risk protection can be provided through programmes and measures that are rooted in legislation. Lack of social and financial...Read more

Social accountability in the delivery of social protection: Exploration of approaches and principles

On 1 March 2018, HelpAge International and the International Policy Centre for Inclusive Growth organised the second in a three part webinar series focused on the role of social accountability in the delivery of social protection. The recording is available here and the presentation here . The event explored approaches to social accountability through two case studies. The first was the Zanzibar Universal Pension Scheme (ZUPS), a non-contributory social pension available to all older Zanzibaris aged 70 years and above (approximately 25,000 older people). Zanzibar is a semi-autonomous region of Tanzania with a population of almost 1 million. The second case study was the Social Protection and Poverty Reduction programme in Indonesia, which has a number of integrated social protection...Read more

Why is social protection vital to ensure that no person with a disability is left behind?

Social protection schemes "should be disability-sensitive"
The webinar titled, Why is social protection vital to ensure that no person with a disability is left behind?, took place on 25 January 2018, addressing themes surrounding labour market programmes, productive inclusion, social protection systems, and targeting. It provided evidence from countries including Vietnam, Malawi, Nepal and South Africa. The webinar was hosted by and organised by Development Pathways . It counted with presentations by Stephen Kidd , (Senior Social Policy Specialist, Development Pathways) and Morgan Banks (Research Fellow, the International Centre for Evidence in Disability, the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine). Alexandra Barrantes (Senior Social Policy Specialist at Development Pathways) served as...Read more

From manual to digital: First hand insight into Malawi’s Social Cash Transfer

How cash transfers are delivered to beneficiaries involves important policy and practical considerations. This blog presents first-hand experience of the manual distribution of Malawi’s Social Cash Transfer Programme (locally known as the Mtukula Pakhomo ). Recognising the practical demands on government staff capacity explains the move towards experimenting with alternative transfer modalities: namely e-payments. However, this approach also involves pros and cons. In previous blogs , I explored how implementing cash transfers is a demanding task. This time, I will briefly describe the manual cash transfer process in Malawi, from the perspective of an observer, to provide brief insight into the extent of the task many African government’s grapple with. I then...Read more

Social accountability in social protection: Unpacking the concept

On 18th January 2018, the first in a three part webinar series focused on the role of social accountability in social protection took place. This was the first time that experts and practitioners from across the globe had been brought together to discuss this important topic. Social accountability is an approach to building accountability in which citizens are the key actors . More specifically, it refers to ‘the extent and capacity of citizens to hold the state and service providers accountable and make them responsive to the needs of citizens and beneficiaries’. Social accountability is important for social protection for at least three reasons: It helps programmes function effectively by: reducing error, fraud and corruption;...Read more

Conditional or unconditional cash transfers? From ideology to policy dialogue

Building resilience against hunger and malnutrition in Burkina Faso, the European Commission's humanitarian aid department (ECHO) funds the NGO ACF to provide health and nutrition care as well as food assistance including cash transfers for the poorest families. Photo credit: EC/ECHO/Anouk Delafortrie
Should cash transfers be conditional or unconditional? Putting ideological views about the approach aside, policy outcomes are most often a reflection of practical limitations and political considerations. This can be said to account for the emergence of ‘soft conditions’, involving community enforcement. Conditionality Roughly speaking, social protection cash transfers can be categorised as either conditional or unconditional: Conditional cash transfers require beneficiaries to comply with specific conditions to be eligible for the transfer. These are often related to school attendance or health care. Unconditional cash transfers do not require any specific actions to be undertaken by targeted beneficiaries. The decision about whether a new programme...Read more

What role can social protection play in responding to humanitarian emergencies?

Refugee camp, Rwanda (2006) Photo credit: Elisa Finocchiaro, Flickr
What role can social protection play in responding to humanitarian emergencies? The webinar, titled What role can social protection play in responding to humanitarian emergencies , presented the findings concerning social protection systems and crisis management in Pakistan, Mozambique, Mali, the Sahel, Philippines and Lesotho. The event took place on the 11 January 2018, and focused on themes surrounding shock responsive systems and social assistance. The webinar was hosted by and organised by Oxford Policy Management (OPM), in collaboration with the Overseas Development Institute (ODI), the Cash Learning Partnership (CALp) and the National Institute of Psychical Health (INASP). The webinar was moderated by Sarah Bailey (Research...Read more

Climate change adaptation for smallholder farmers in the Lake Chad Basin

Photo: UN Security Council United Kingdom Field Mission to the Lake Chad Basin. Photo credit: Lorey Campese, 2014, Flickr.
The Lake Chad Basin (LCB) is among the world’s biggest, located in the Sahel region of Africa (Abubakar, n.d.). It also has one of the largest sedimentary closed groundwater basins in the whole of the African continent. With its vast pasture of cultivable land and wealthy fish stocks, it is an essential area both economically and environmentally to the riparian states of Chad, Cameroon, Libya, Nigeria and Niger (GIZ, 2015b). Photo: UN Security Council United Kingdom Field Mission to the Lake Chad Basin . Photo credit: Lorey Campese, 2014, Flickr. Approximately 38 million people from diverse ethnic cultures presently live in the LCB (GIZ, 2015b). The majority of these people are from poor rural households and survive on subsistence farming (GIZ, 2015b). Recent occurrences, due to...Read more

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Before we start the course, we want to get a sense of where you are coming from on this ‘journey’ into social protection systems. Take a few minutes to truthfully answer the questions below – they will help us better deliver the course for you, and also assess how your understanding has changed once the course is over!