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Int J Health Plann Manage. 2012 Apr-Jun;27(2):167-79. doi: 10.1002/hpm.2102. Epub 2012 Mar 1.

Healthcare financing in Syria: satisfaction with the current system and the role of national health insurance--a qualitative study of householders' views.

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Department of Health Care Management, Berlin University of Technology, Straße des 17 Juni 135, Berlin, Germany.


This study aims to identify the satisfaction with the current public health system and health benefit schemes, examine willingness to participate in national health insurance and review expectations and preferences of national health insurance. To this end, qualitative semi-structured interviews were carried out with 19 Syrian householders. Our results show that a need for health reform exists and that Syrian people are willing to support a national health insurance scheme if some key issues are properly addressed. Funding of the scheme is a major concern and should take into account the ability to pay and help the poor. In addition, waiting times should be shortened and sufficient coverage guaranteed. On the whole, the people would support a national health insurance with national pooling and purchasing under a public set-up, but important concerns of such a system regarding corruption and inefficiency were voiced too. Installing a quasi non-governmental organisation as manager of the insurance system under the stewardship of the Ministry of Health could provide a compromise acceptable to the people.

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