Most national healthcare systems are significantly financed using international credit. The Eritrean healthcare system is considerably financed using the credit. Eritrea, an eastern African state, borders Sudan, the Red Sea, and Ethiopia. Ethiopia granted it independence in 1993. Eritrea is a member of various UN agencies, including the WHO along with the World Bank. Eritrea is among the quite few states that attained the health MDGs (Millennium Development Goals) significantly (OECD, 2015; UNICEF, 2008, p.7). Although the country still relies on international aid, it has suffered marked international isolation over the years. The isolation has forced Eritreans to more and more rely on own material and human resources. The reliance on the resources has led to the growth of self-reliance as an Eritrean national principle according to Pose and Samuel (2011).
The Effect of International Aid on Eritrea’s Development
International credit has had mixed outcomes on Eritrea’s political, economic, as well as social, development. Although the country accepts international support sparingly, the effects of the support are rather evident. The country continues to drain its resources through the servicing of external debt. Such resources would have helped significantly in the country’s political, economic, as well as social, development. From 2010 to 2014, the country remained obligated to service an external debt of $945,548,000 (World Bank, 2015). Over the years, the World Bank along with the IMF have had limited efforts towards helping poor economies. In some instances, the support they give harms the conditions of the beneficiaries further.
The finances that Eritrea uses in servicing loans advanced by the institutions could be better utilized in providing healthcare and related elementary services to Eritreans. The loans have been a crippling load that undermines Eritrea’s economic, as well as social, progress. The diversion of public finances to service the loans have seen the country’s transport, housing, sanitation, education, and agriculture sectors deteriorate over time since they cannot be financed sufficiently by the government (Bertelsmann Stiftung, 2009). That has increased the burden borne by Eritreans in terms of inadequate and decaying infrastructures, economic failures, malnutrition, hunger, diseases, starvation, and chronic poverty.
The only exceptional impact that the loans advanced to Eritrea by institutions, like the World Bank along with the IMF, is that they have markedly assisted the country enhance its healthcare system over the years. Eritrea, Seychelles, Cape Verde, and Mauritius are the only African states that have made commendable progress towards the attainment of the health MDGs (OECD, 2015; UNICEF, 2008, p.7). Notably, Eritrea, unlike Seychelles, Cape Verde, and Mauritius, is not deemed a medium-income economy. Its economy is rather poor. Thus, its development with respect to health is largely attributable to international aid according to Pose and Samuel (2011). The development of health services and facilities has gone despite the minimal progress that the country has registered in other political, economic, as well as social, development areas.
How Healthy Eritreans Help Grow their Country’s Economy
A healthy Eritrean population bolsters their country’s economy in various ways. First, the participation, or involvement of all healthy Eritreans of majority age in obligatory military training, as well as national reconstruction, compensates for Eritrea’s limited capital with respect to reasonably priced labor. Economic growth requires labor. Second, healthy Eritreans, especially those living overseas, send in contributions that help sustain, as well as grow, the economy. Oversea-based Eritreans support their country’s public development programs via a 2% tax imposed on their income overseas. The revenue streaming from the tax amounted to an average of $5.9 million yearly (Bertelsmann Stiftung, 2009).
Third, healthy Eritreans, help the country cut on its expenditure on offering curative services to them. The savings made are usually committed to growing various sector of the economy. Notably, in many countries, the provision of curative healthcare services so costly that it significantly bars their efforts towards making their economies thrives. Health remains a significant big-ticket cost item in most national budgets. Fourth, healthy Eritreans, help the country stem the environment-related challenges that impact on public health. Unlike those who are sick, the healthy ones help stem the pollution of soil, water, as well as air, across the country. That limits the number of health complications stemming from pollution in the country (Bertelsmann Stiftung, 2009).
The Degree to Which the Eritrean Government Uses Foreign Support to Enhance the National Healthcare System
The Eritrean government enhances the national healthcare system using internally-generated resources and foreign aid (World Bank, 2009). The country’s private sector and government are key providers of healthcare services and facilities. Given that most Eritreans are poor, they get the services either at a nominal fee or freely. World Bank (2009) indicates that two thirds of the resources that the government commits to the services’ provision come from foreign development partners (Bertelsmann Stiftung, 2009; WHO, 2009). The resources mainly come from UN agencies, the World Bank, various bilateral bodies, and several NGOs.
International credit has had mixed outcomes on Eritrea’s political, economic, as well as social, development. The Eritrean government enhances the national healthcare system using internally-generated resources and foreign aid. A healthy Eritrean population bolsters their country’s economy in various ways. Eritrea made commendable efforts in pursuit of the health MDGs despite the actuality that it is a poor economy through the use of foreign aid. The Eritrean government has prioritized education along with health highly.