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May 16, 2012

Achieving Equity in Global Health: So Near and Yet So Far

Author Affiliations

Author Affiliations: Division of Women and Child Health, Aga Khan University, Karachi, Pakistan (Dr Bhutta); and Public Health Foundation of India, New Delhi (Dr Reddy).

JAMA. 2012;307(19):2035-2036. doi:10.1001/jama.2012.4659

Few issues have generated as much passion and imagination over the last few decades as the challenge of global health. From major studies on the global burden of disease1 to the recognition of the global epidemic of human immunodeficiency virus, AIDS, and tuberculosis, health has been center stage of the global development debate. Issues, which once remained within the purview of health advocacy and policy circles, found their way into the center stage of debates in the World Economic Forum and onto agendas for G8 and G20 summit meetings. The groundbreaking reports from the Commission for Macroeconomics in Health and Social Determinants of Health highlighted the importance of appropriate resource allocations for health as well as focusing on issues that determine population health, but are frequently beyond the purview of ministries of health. Even as the world contends with a worldwide recession, there is clear recognition that health of populations everywhere must be protected and promoted, not only as a developmental commitment to equity but also as an imperative for economic growth and security.

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