Sudan - Country Commercial Guide
Health Care and Health Technologies
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In 2020, Sudan spent $1.7 billion (6.5 percent of GDP) on health care (8.3 percent of total government expenditures).  The country imported $256 million of packaged medicine.  The main resources for Sudan’s 18 federal states’ health budgets come from the Ministry of Finance.  However, the allocated budgets mostly comprise civil servants’ salaries.  The federal states’ support fund provides funding to some states, which is automatically added to the state’s budget. Health services are provided by the Federal and State Ministries of Heath, military medical services, police, universities, and private sector. Districts or localities mainly provide primary health care and health promotion, while encouraging community participation in caring for their health and surrounding environment.  This district system is a key component of the decentralized approach pursued in Sudan which gives a broader space for local management and administration.  However, most large supply and equipment purchases are conducted through the National Medical Supply Fund (NMSF).

There are 75 degree- and diploma-granting health institutions in Sudan.  There are 14 private institutions, while the others belong to agencies such as the Federal Ministry of Health and other government agencies. There are over 100,000 health workers across 20 different professions, yet Sudan has a shortage of health workers, with only 4.1 physicians and 8.3 nurses and midwives per 10,000 population in 2015.  This workforce has been depleted by severe brain drain, with low staff retention and high emigration of health-care workers, driven by political instability, low wages, and poor-quality training opportunities. Over half of Sudanese doctors practice abroad.  Other health workforce challenges include an unbalanced skill mix and inequitable geographical distribution of workers.

Private sector health care also provides a wide range of health services and is generally profitable. There are many private clinics, health centers, and hospitals that offer various levels of care and specialized services. Non-profit organizations are widely disbursed across Sudan and are functioning in coordination with the Federal Ministry of Health (FMOH).  For instance, Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) operates several hospitals and medical clinics is some states, particularly those with security challenges.  These hospitals provide secondary care, consultations, and hospitalization when needed, while health clinics provide reproductive health, antenatal care, on top of other basic primary care services.  Furthermore, in collaboration with the FMOH, MSF has conducted vaccination campaigns and operated mobile clinics focused on education, vaccination, and child and women care efforts.