Gabon: Africa First Universal Health Care by USA TODAY- (United States:Valorisation Economique du Gabon)

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The Gabonese government

is fighting poverty and social

exclusion through broader

access to healthcare



The Health Insurance and

Social Guarantee Office, or

CNAMGS, was created in

August 2007 in an effort to

tackle poverty and the obstacles

many families have

in accessing healthcare. Currently,

the majority of the

population in Gabon spends

the better part of their income

on health services (an

average of 52.1% of household

income, according to

the World Health Organization).

This situation causes

global impoverishment that

acts like a vicious cycle, crippling

the economy and slowing


Over the past two years,

CNAMGS has been in

charge of ensuring health and

welfare coverage for ‘Economically

Weak Gabonese’

(EWG), and in the coming

year, it will spread coverage

over to state workers and the

private sectors. “At the end of

this process, Gabon will be

the first country in sub-Saharan

Africa to settle a compulsory

universal healthcare

insurance,” says Michel

Mboussou, managing director


This new national health insurance

will improve access to

health for nearly all social strata

of the population by lightening

individual charges, while

providing healthcare institutions

with assured financial

means. This mechanism is a

clear indication of Ali Bongo

Ondimba’s social policy, which

is based on the principle of

“everyone contributes according

to his means, but receives


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