Reimagining Global Health: An Introduction (California Series in Public Anthropology)

Reimagining Global Health: An Introduction (California Series in Public Anthropology)

Paul Farmer

Language: English

Pages: 504

ISBN: 0520271998

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


Bringing together the experience, perspective and expertise of Paul Farmer, Jim Yong Kim, and Arthur Kleinman, Reimagining Global Health provides an original, compelling introduction to the field of global health. Drawn from a Harvard course developed by their student Matthew Basilico, this work provides an accessible and engaging framework for the study of global health. Insisting on an approach that is historically deep and geographically broad, the authors underline the importance of a transdisciplinary approach, and offer a highly readable distillation of several historical and ethnographic perspectives of contemporary global health problems.

The case studies presented throughout Reimagining Global Health bring together ethnographic, theoretical, and historical perspectives into a wholly new and exciting investigation of global health. The interdisciplinary approach outlined in this text should prove useful not only in schools of public health, nursing, and medicine, but also in undergraduate and graduate classes in anthropology, sociology, political economy, and history, among others.

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improve systems of health care delivery. Expanding and improving surgical capacity in resource-constrained settings is synergistic with many other key global health priorities, such as maternal health, noncommunicable diseases, and cancer—not to mention health system strengthening in general. Surgery is, as noted, a pillar of modern obstetrics. We live in a world in which there are too many Caesarian sections performed in some regions and none at all in others. Millennium Development Goal 5,

Aristide was reinstated with the help of the United States and the United Nations; but the deal came with conditions, including further “reforms” of the Haitian economy that followed structural adjustment policies.17 As chapter 4 discusses, such stipulations capped social-sector spending. The public health and education systems remained starved of resources. And despite promises to the contrary, foreign aid for public-sector services remained paltry during the remainder of Aristide’s term and

health worker. These patients would receive financial aid of $30 per month for the first three months and would also be eligible for nutritional supplements. Further, these patients were to receive a monthly reminder from their village health worker to attend clinic. Travel expenses (for example, renting a donkey) would be defrayed with a $5 honorarium when they arrived for a clinic visit. If a Sector 1 patient did not attend, someone from the clinic—often a physician or an auxiliary nurse—would

Meanwhile, the PIH/ZL team faced its own scale-up challenges as did the health authorities in Haiti’s underfunded and understaffed public sector. Scaling Up in Rural Haiti Despite the slogan of the 1978 Declaration of Alma-Ata (described in chapter 4), the year 2000 was not marked by celebrations of health care for all. It was, rather, the year that AIDS surpassed tuberculosis as the leading infectious killer of young adults worldwide.70 Haiti was no exception. The PIH/ZL team could not

care scheme, its citizens have, by many estimates, some of the best access to services in the developing world, even in rural areas.39 For example, 97 percent of Keralan mothers deliver their babies in hospitals or other institutions.40 Critical to the Keralan model is high social-sector spending: 15 percent of the state budget was allocated to health and 25 percent to education throughout the 1990s.41 These high percentages are a function of the government’s small overall budget; per capita

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