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Argentina: Catastrophic and impoverishing health care spending - P4H Network

Argentina: Catastrophic and impoverishing health care spending

According to the 2004-2005 National Household Survey, 5.1% of Argentine households incurred catastrophic health expenses for the 40% threshold. That percentage dropped to 2.5% according to the 2017-2018 National Household Survey.

Financial protection in health implies that all people should be able to access the health services they need without having difficulty paying for them. Out-of-pocket health spending is considered catastrophic if it is greater than a specified percentage of household discretionary spending (known as a threshold), in a given period, usually one year. This non-discretionary expenditure is equal to the total household expenditure, discounting the expenditure made on food.

The results show that the percentage of Argentine households that incurred catastrophic health spending for the 40% threshold decreased from 5.1% to 2.5% according to the 2004-2005 and 2017-2018 National Household Surveys, respectively. This decrease in catastrophic health spending between the two periods of analysis may be the result of the progress made in recent years in the financial protection of the population in Argentina, as a consequence of the implementation of specific health programs.