Global Resources

The public budget and maternal mortality in Mexico: an overview of the experience

Author: D. Díaz, H. Hofbauer
Publisher: International Budget Partnership
Publication Date: Jan 2004
This report comes out of a collaborative project to evaluate the allocation of public resources to the reduction of maternal mortality. The study's findings showed that basic health services were insufficient to face the challenge of reducing maternal mortality among the poor. The research and advocacy that has resulted from the collaboration has had several positive outcomes including the fact that the federal government has earmarked a substantial amount of decentralised health resources to programmes specifically targeting maternal health. A strategic choice made during the research was to contrast the money allocated to maternal and reproductive health in the public budgets with other areas of spending, which highlighted that resources were indeed available. This bolstered the position of health ministry officials who were being forced to reduce their budgets. Changes were also achieved because information was gathered and presented in a timely fashion. External factors that also contributed to the success of the project, include the passage of an 'access to information' law in Mexico in 2003 and changes to the structure of the Ministry of Health that strengthened interaction and discussion of the issues.