Can Aid Improve People Health in Sub-Saharan African Countries?

W. Jean Marie Kébré


This paper analyzes the effects of aid on health of people in Sub-Saharan African Countries. Used as health indicators for infant mortality rate, crude mortality rate and HIV/AIDS prevalence rate, this analysis uses panel data for a sample of 43 countries over the period of 1990 to 2014. Through assessing the effect of aid on reducing mortality and HIV prevalence, the article examines a central issue with regard to the new global development agenda: Can we still promote health through increased aid? The results tend to show that aid significantly reduces crude mortality and infant mortality rates and HIV/AIDS prevalence rate. They do not validate the presence of decreasing marginal returns. However, the impact of aid on health indicators is not linear. This non-linearity suggests that aid is more effective in reducing mortality and HIV prevalence in relatively poorest countries and in those with relatively lower health expenditure. Thus, health promotion in sub-Saharan African countries through increased aid is possible.

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