Health Care Challenges in the Developing World: Spotlight Oman
November 11, Muscat, Sultanate of Oman. Hi Excellency Dr. Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Obeid Al Sa’eedi, Oman's minister of health, and HSR's Chief Executive Officer Pr. Joseph Antoun discussed at the annual meeting of the Buck Advisory Council the latest health system challenges, strategies and reforms in MENA countries.
Highlights of the discussion included the rise of chronic diseases such as heart disease and diabetes; the increasing cost of health care; and the role of the private sector in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries. Pr. Antoun presented a comparative health systems analysis of GCC countries and discussed few regional health system challenges such as: supply of skilled workforce in healthcare, uptake of cost-effective health technologies, integrated approaches to primary care and chronic disease prevention. Pr. Antoun briefly discussed the latest HSR research and findings on how to improve Governance and leadership in GCC health systems throughout and post Arab Spring era.
His Excellency minister Al-Sa'eedi presented to the Buck's Council the history and evolution of Oman's Health System. The vision of his majesty Sultan Qaboos which, as early as the 70's, was centered around developing social services including healthcare has yielded to a cost-effective system which ranked 8th in the 2000 World Health Organization ranking of health systems. Oman is among the top MENA countries on many healthcare metrics like life expectancy, access to and affordability of services. The current health system strategy focuses on improving both technical and allocative efficiency in health financing as well as developing a best-in-class human capital in healthcare.