The difficult access to medicines for people with disabilities in Mozambique is directly related to extreme poverty of families, in a context where women, children and elderly are the most vulnerable.

The data are contained in the research on Access to Medicine for People with Disabilities, presented by the Citizen Observatory for Health (OCS), within the scope of the I National Conference on Health, which took place last July in Maputo.

“In general, the most vulnerable group are women, children and the elderly with disabilities”, the study states, advancing that “less than half of the people with disabilities, in the universe of the study, only have access to iboprofem and paracetamol, available in the public sector.”

According to the research, which was focused on some neighborhoods of the Province and City of Maputo, a significant number of people with disabilities is young, aged between 18 and 35 years, representing 8.1% of the universe, with emphasis on women, as illustrated in the table below:

The research also points out that, in the universe of interviewees, only 66.7.3% of people with disabilities have access to medicines, in a context in which people often need different medicines for continuous use for the relief of effects resulting from the differentiated condition of the body’s organic functioning.
These data also have to do with the employability of people in the country, and some people do not have access to medicines because they cannot afford them. That is, the informal sector represents the largest labor force, with 66.89% female people spending a maximum of 1,500.00 meticais per month to acquire medicines and only 56 male people spend the same amount, working in the same informal sector.
“This fact demonstrates a high degree of poverty, exclusion and propitiates the massive occurrence of catastrophic and impoverishing expenditures.

These data attribute an oppressive character to the National Health System. Most of the disabled people, females, are working in the informal sector and even for those who are in the formal sector, the fact that they have access to an occupation does not necessarily mean that they have better living conditions capable of responding to their demands in the purchase of medicines. 35 females in the informal sector spend at least 6,000.00 meticais on medicines per month in private pharmacies”, it’s read in the research.
In general, the families that spend more on medicines work in the informal sector (a sector characterized by income uncertainties).

The female universe, although encouraging more expenditure on medicines, is more represented in the formal work sector compared to men. Overall, approximately 63% of people with disabilities spend a maximum of 1,000.00 meticais to purchase medicines in private pharmacies, which means little purchasing power due to their low monthly incomes, mainly in the informal sector, with more emphasis on women.


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