Global investments in pandemic preparedness and COVID-19: development assistance and domestic spending on health between 1990 and 2026
Okonji, Osaretin Christabel
Micah, Angela E
Cogswell, Ian E
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Background: The COVID-19 pandemic highlighted gaps in health surveillance systems, disease prevention, and treatment globally. Among the many factors that might have led to these gaps is the issue of the financing of national health systems, especially in low-income and middle-income countries (LMICs), as well as a robust global system for pandemic preparedness. We aimed to provide a comparative assessment of global health spending at the onset of the pandemic; characterise the amount of development assistance for pandemic preparedness and response disbursed in the first 2 years of the COVID-19 pandemic; and examine expectations for future health spending and put into context the expected need for investment in pandemic preparedness. Methods: In this analysis of global health spending between 1990 and 2021, and prediction from 2021 to 2026, we estimated four sources of health spending: development assistance for health (DAH), government spending, out-of-pocket spending, and prepaid private spending across 204 countries and territories. We used the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)'s Creditor Reporting System (CRS) and the WHO Global Health Expenditure Database (GHED) to estimate spending.