Elets Conference: Argentine healthcare spending, per-capita way ahead in the region: Ambassador, Embassy of the Argentine Republic

Daniel Chuburu

Argentina is an upper middle income country with a population of 44 million and more than 90% of whom live in large cities. In many aspects we have a highly developed health system particularly in low and middle income countries standard. The healthcare system performs well on several key indicators. However, without its outcomes, it lacks behind in country’s potential. We are one of the leaders in the region with respect to the healthcare spending, per-capita and human development assured. The major health problems in Argentina today are related to both equity and efficiency along with many other countries in Latin America. any of Argentina’s healthcare shortcomings arrives from fragmented and explorative system divided into 3 large sectors; public, social security and private sector.


The Public sector funded by taxes means that the health cost is 0, is decentralized to the provinces which are clearly doing all to win over states, giving the federal ministry of health a narrow but strategic role in national health policy. Public health funds usually flow from national to provincial and to local budgets.

The social security sector is a dominant health sector in Argentina and consists of many different funds. They provide health coverage for more than 14 million people, which means 1/3rd of the total population. In addition to these, there is one for the overall state and government union and this covers another 7 million people out of the 24 districts. Finally 5 million elderly and people with disabilities are covered by a nationwide social health insurance fund for retire workers, called PAMI in spanish; broadly comparable to medicare in the US. Overall the social insurance sector provides coverage to 60% of the 45 million people that we have. The private insurance sector covers 6 million people where 4 million comes from contracts of private firms and 2 million are on individual basis through direct of voluntary pre-payments in approximately 200 private insurance or prepaid health plans. The dimensions of Universal health coverage as defined by organizations run along 3 main aspects. Population and health services are covered by pool funds. We have achieved many of the universal health coverage goals and the country already faces some of the challenges of the more developed and matured healthcare systems. Associated with these, we have the pharmaceutical industry. the top labs have developed a pharmaceutical industry which has taken up the position of leadership in markets across Latin America. Pharma sector is the most dynamic in Argentina’s economy is now an engine of economic growth.


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