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National Health Accounts in Latin America and Caribbean - Concept, Results and Policy Uses


  • Alessandro Magnoli

    (Harvard University)


This paper presents the National Health Accounts (NHA) methodology and its relevance in policy making in the Latin American and Caribbean (LAC) region. After presenting the concept of NHA and highlighting recent results of LAC data collection activities, the paper will focus on policy applications of NHA and its usefulness in supporting the financial dimension of health reforms. Lastly, it will analyze problems and drawbacks in the use of this tool. In short, the paper attempts to answer the following questions: What is NHA? How is it used? Why is it not used? How can and should it be put to use in LAC? Despite the serious drawbacks that exist in the NHA practice (e.g., methodological problems, understanding by policy makers, and institutionalization), the main message of this paper is a normative one: NHA should become the Management Information System for health policies, in particular when the health reform process is in progress.

Suggested Citation

  • Alessandro Magnoli, 2005. "National Health Accounts in Latin America and Caribbean - Concept, Results and Policy Uses," Public Economics 0509006, EconWPA.
  • Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwppe:0509006
    Note: Type of Document - pdf; pages: 50. After highlighting recent results of data collection, the paper focuses on policy applications of NHA in supporting the financial dimension of health reforms. IADB/INDES/Harvard, Alessandro Magnoli, Sept. 2001.

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Torsten Persson & Gerard Roland & Guido Tabellini, 2000. "Comparative Politics and Public Finance," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 108(6), pages 1121-1161, December.
    2. Alberto Alesina & Enrico Spolaore, 1997. "On the Number and Size of Nations," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 112(4), pages 1027-1056.
    3. Torsten Persson & Gérard Roland & Guido Tabellini, 1997. "Separation of Powers and Political Accountability," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 112(4), pages 1163-1202.
    4. Wallace E. Oates, 1999. "An Essay on Fiscal Federalism," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 37(3), pages 1120-1149, September.
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    More about this item


    Health Economics; Public Policy; Economic Welfare; Public Economics.;

    JEL classification:

    • D6 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics
    • D7 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making
    • H - Public Economics


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