Creating Access to Health Technologies in Poor Countries

Authored by: Laura J. Frost , Michael R. Reich

Routledge Handbook of Global Public Health

Print publication date:  December  2010
Online publication date:  December  2010

Print ISBN: 9780415778480
eBook ISBN: 9780203832721
Adobe ISBN: 9781136838330


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Many people in developing countries lack access to health technologies, even basic ones. These technologies include life-saving medicines, such as antiretrovirals for HIV/AIDS, as well as life-enhancing medicines, such as medications that help stop asthma attacks and improve breathing. Limited access is also a problem with many other health products, such as vaccines that can prevent debilitating diseases, diagnostics for infectious and chronic diseases, preventive technologies such as insecticide-treated bed nets, and various kinds of contraceptives. In 1999 the World Health Organization (WHO) estimated that since the mid-1980s, around 1.7 billion people – approximately one-third of the world’s population in 1999 – did not have regular access to essential medicines and vaccines.

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