Topic: Guaranteeing Access to High Quality Medical Care in the Developing World
Country: Republic of Albania
Delegates: Kylie Cook, Sylvia Rheinebach
Albania represents a complex history. Due to the location of Albania, which is situated in the edge of Europe, near the Middle East, the Albanians have often been drawn into conflict and the freedom of the current government has been a long time coming. Albania was ruled by the Ottoman Empire for centuries, and then not long after the proclamation of independence in 1912, Albania was overrun by successive armies in the First World War. Albania became a kingdom in 1928, but was then occupied once more by Italy during the Second World War. Albania was liberated by Joseph Stalin, leader of the former Soviet Union, in 1944, and a new communist government was installed. In 1992 Albania threw off 47 years of Communism and became the current Republic of Albania.
Albania is considered a developing country, and Albanian law requires that all citizens have the same access to medical care. The Albanian medical care program is funded through the State, which in turn is funded by insurance contributions from those employed and their employers. Unfortunately in the past years poverty has caused funding to be very limited. The Albanian government has shown strong commitment to reforms in several key areas, including improving health financing systems and hospital services, pharmaceutical reforms, and expanding social health insurance. Albania is improving policy currently, starting with the efforts to improve the medical system, starting with bringing in more doctors and clinics. A pharmaceutical inspectorate has also been created to enforce observance of standards among drug dispensers, most of whom operate in the private sector.
Presently, Albania continues to improve the medical care that it can provide to Albanian citizens. The State funds what it can, such as subsidizing basic medicines deemed necessary to fight more common illnesses. Albania also continue to strive to do better in this area, and that is why it fully support action that the United Nations can take that will improve both conditions in Albania’s developing medical care systems and the entire world, in order to give all people the opportunities that they deserve. Recently, in 2015, Albania received funding assistance from the EU for the Health System Improvement Project, which will support enhancing the efficiency of care in many hospitals in Albania, improving the management information in the health system, and increasing financial access to health services. By the project’s end there should be a decrease in the number of acute care beds by 800 beds in many district hospitals, according to the Hospital Master Plan. Due to pharmaceutical reform, a reduction of 25 percent in average prices for the 10 most common prescription and 10 most expensive medicines should occur, which will improve financial protection from health expenditures. The Health System Improvement Project will enable an increase of health insurance coverage of up to 65 percent for the Albanian poor.
Albanian efforts working toward the ability to guarantee high quality medical care are a primary reason why the country feels strongly that it is the entire world’s duty to support access to high quality medical care in the developing world. Albania will support action that allows more developing countries like Albania to guarantee access to high quality medical care. Providing high quality medical care to its citizens is a country’s obligation, and Albania wishes to guarantee within the next years that it will be able to do just that. Through projects like the Health System Improvement Project, soon all developing countries will have the ability to provide for their citizens.
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