How much would it take to end health gaps?

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Bridging the health gap between rich and poor nations is feasible in the next 22 years, but it will require the international community to refocus its assistance, and explore inexpensive but innovative interventions to curb emerging health issues, such as noncommunicable diseases.

That’s what 25 leading global health experts and economists noted in a new report recently published in the leading medical journal Lancet. In the report, the authors laid out an “ambitious” investment plan for governments and donors to follow to help secure the lives of 10 million people in low- and middle-income countries by 2035.

The experts recommend that the international community spend at least $70 billion a year on health, a huge sum at a time of shrinking aid budgets. But Lawrence Summers, president emeritus and professor at Harvard University who led the report, argued that the figure is less than 1 percent of the extra annual GDP by 2035 resulting from economic growth in low- and lower-middle-income countries.

The report forecasts real GDP growth per year from now to 2035 for low-income countries at 4.5 percent and and lower-middle-income economies at 4.3 percent.

Source: Devex (link opens in a new window)

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