This note describes the main strategies used by, and available to, countries to deliver cash support in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The objective of the note is to inform both ongoing responses to COVID-19 and medium to long term investments in delivery mechanisms that could be used to respond to future crises.
In detail, it builds on existing literature (see Box 1 for full references) to provide governments and development partners with concise information on the main payment options available, outlining strengths and weaknesses of each, as well as pre-requisites and key actions required for their inclusive implementation.
It is important to highlight that this note focuses on:
- the provision of cash support to new beneficiaries, not existing ones. Reaching new caseloads is more challenging than supporting existing beneficiaries since it requires creating new payment mechanisms or adapting/leveraging existing ones.
- monetary or semi-monetary transfers (vouchers), not in-kind;
- Government to Person (G2P) transfers and Humanitarian cash delivery (noting considerations will differ slightly across the two);
- social assistance transfers primarily, not social insurance.