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Revista Panamericana de Salud Pública

On-line version ISSN 1680-5348Print version ISSN 1020-4989


MADIES, Claudia Viviana; CHIARVETTI, Silvia  and  CHORNY, Marina. Health insurance and health coverage: two critical issues within the context of health sector reform. Rev Panam Salud Publica [online]. 2000, vol.8, n.1-2, pp.33-42. ISSN 1680-5348.

The goal of health for all in the year 2000, which was established at Alma Ata more than two decades ago, has led countries in Latin America and the Caribbean to adopt health sector reforms aimed at extending health coverage to each and every individual citizen. Whereas much has come about as a result of reform policies in the way of theory and legislation, in practice the goals that were established are far from attained, and many countries show large gaps in theoretical coverage on the one hand, and true coverage on the other. This is largely due to organizational features and other "endogenous" characteristics of the various countries' health systems, as well as to "exogenous" factors in the political, macroeconomic, social, epidemiologic, and cultural spheres. This documents takes a close look at the different types of health systems that are currently operating in countries of the Region and their impact on sources of health insurance and health coverage for individuals living in those countries. The end of the article focuses on the different strategies adopted by the countries in an effort to extend health coverage, which in some cases involve policies targeting the most vulnerable social groups.

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