The COVID-19 pandemic has redirected the world’s attention to the importance of strong public health systems. Uganda, one of the Global Financing Facility’s (GFF) country cases, was also impacted by the virus outbreak. This new factsheet – a second joint publication in the series with partner CEHURD – provides an overview of updated information about the GFF in Uganda (since the first publication) and of its response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

COVID-19 has directly impacted the Ugandan health system, and has also indirectly affected the whole socioeconomic environment of the country. For example, the GFF estimated that because of disruptions in all essential services, child mortality in Uganda could increase by 22% and maternal mortality by 21% in the course of 2020 and 2021. And like most global health initiatives, the GFF has responded to the pandemic, and remains committed to protect and maintain essential health services for women, children and adolescents in its 36 partner countries by supporting governments to plan and prioritize, by strengthening frontline service delivery and by addressing demand-side constraints. Still, as Uganda now revising its GFF Investment Case, we see that civil society participation in the process remains a challenge.

“We found that in Uganda, management of COVID-19 patients has been taking place in public health facilities, which has disrupted access and quality of other services offered in these facilities adversely affecting the most vulnerable peoples who cannot afford private health care, especially the youth and expectant mothers. The long-term success of the country’s response to the pandemic depends on the resilience of these facilities – which are often the first and only option for the poor – and the public health system overall,” says global health advocate Myria Koutsoumpa.