Additional Resources: Global Health
Section 1: Organizations
The American Medical Student Association (AMSA), with a half-century history of medical student activism, is the oldest and largest independent association of physicians-in-training in the United States. AMSA is committed to improving health care and healthcare delivery to all people; promoting active improvement in medical education; and involving its members in the social, moral and ethical obligations of the profession of medicine.
The British Medical Association is a voluntary professional association of doctors from all branches of medicine in the UK. It has a membership of approximately 140,000 and speaks for doctors at home and abroad. In 2005, BMA organized an international conference on the global health workforce and the lak of healthcare workers in developing countries, particularly those in sub-Saharan Africa. A call to action on the healthcare skills drain resulted from the conference.
The University of Pretoria (UP) established the Centre for the Study of AIDS (CSA) in 1999 to "mainstream" HIV/AIDS through all aspects of University's core business activities. The CSA promotes a holistic understanding of HIV/AIDS, where it is not simply seen as a pure medical issue, but as a social, medical, developmental and legal one.
Doctors Without Borders/Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) is an independent international medical humanitarian organization that delivers emergency aid to people affected by armed conflict, epidemics, natural or man-made disasters, or exclusion from health care in more than 70 countries. In emergencies and their aftermath, MSF provides health care, rehabilitates and runs hospitals and clinics, performs surgery, battles epidemics, carries out vaccination campaigns, operates feeding centers for malnourished children, and offers mental health care.
The Francois-Xavier Bagnoud Center for Health and Human Rights is the first academic center to focus exclusively on health and human rights. The Center combines the academic strengths of research and teaching with a strong commitment to service and policy development.
The GAVI Alliance is a unique, multi-dimensional partnership of public and private sector resources with a single, shared focus: to improve child health in the poorest countries by extending the reach and quality of immunisation coverage within strengthened health services. GAVI???s partners include UN agencies and institutions, civil society organisations, public health institutes, donor and implementing country governments, and others whose collective efforts and expertise are enabling much greater progress to be made in this field than ever before.
Almost half of the adults living with HIV and AIDS today are women. Over the past two years, the number of women and girls infected with HIV has increased in every region of the world, with rates rising particularly rapidly in Eastern Europe, Asia, and Latin America. Launched by UNAIDS in early 2004, the Global Coalition on Women and AIDS works at global and national levels to highlight the effects of AIDS on women and girls and to stimulate concrete and effective action to prevent the spread of HIV.
GlobalHealthReporting.org is a project developed and operated by the Kaiser Family Foundation with major support from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to provide journalists and others - including researchers, policymakers and nongovernmental organizations - with the latest news and information about HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria worldwide.
GlobalHealthFacts.org, a project of the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation and companion site to GlobalHealthReporting.org, provides free, up-to-date and easy-to-access data by country on HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, malaria and other key health and socio-economic indicators.
Global Lawyers and Physicians (GLP) is a non-profit non-governmental organization that focuses on health and human rights issues. Lawyers and physicians, by virtue of their privileged position and their commitment to life, health, social justice, and equality, have special obligations to all people. GLP was founded on the premise that these professions, working together transnationally, can be a much more effective force for human rights than either profession can working separately.
The Health Financing Task Force is an independent group, of prominent public and private leaders, created in response to the absence of attention to systemic health financing for health and social protection and the role it plays in making the right to health a reality in developing countries. HFTF builds on the work of existing organizations active in the field and adds value by taking a systemic view of financing issues, bringing together leading experts, researchers, practitioners, and decision-makers to share experiences and knowledge, and assessing health financing challenges from an independent and fresh perspective.
Women now account for over 50% of global infections and there are at least 19.2 million women around the world who are living with HIV/AIDS. ICW was formed by a group of HIV positive women from many different countries attending the 8th International Conference on AIDS held in Amsterdam in July 1992. A registered UK charity, ICW is the only international network run for and by HIV positive women.
IPM is a non-profit product development partnership (PDP) established in 2002 to prevent HIV transmission by accelerating the development and availability of a safe and effective microbicide for use by women in developing countries. IPM is committed to providing women with an affordable and self-initiated HIV- prevention strategy.
Leading advocates for women and children have joined forces to create The Partnership for Maternal, Newborn & Child Health. The Partnership unites leaders in developing and donor countries in the effort to achieve Millennium Development Goals 4 & 5, focusing global efforts to scale up resources, strategies and political commitments to achieve these goals. The vision of The Partnership is to reduce maternal, newborn and child mortality and morbidity through universal coverage of essential care.
Partners In Health (PIH) is a nonprofit corporation with a presence in Latin America, the Caribbean, Russia, and the United States. PIH coordinates innovative programs to combat AIDS and women's health problems in rural Haiti and urban Massachusetts, groundbreaking tuberculosis treatment projects in the prisons of Siberia and the shantytowns of Lima, and health policy initiatives on a global scale.
Physicians for Human Rights (PHR) promotes health by protecting human rights. PHR believes that human rights are essential preconditions for the health and well-being of all people. Using medical and scientific methods, PHR investigates and exposes violations of human rights worldwide and works to stop them.
The WHO Health and Human Rights Publication Series aims to clarify the relationship between human rights and specific health topics such as the right to water, HIV/AIDS and poverty reduction strategies.
As Americans, we are aware of our rights as citizens. We pound our chests and claim our entitlements when those rights are being violated. In a famous 1964 case, Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart in his opinion statement on obscenity said, "I know it when I see it." Human rights are many times just the opposite. You know it when you don't see it or don't have it; you know it when your rights are being violated. But where do those rights come from, and is the right to health among them?
While HIV/AIDS is a health issue, the epidemic is a gender issue. Statistics prove that both the spread and impact of HIV/AIDS are not random. HIV/AIDS disproportionately affects women and adolescent girls who are socially, culturally, biologically, and economically more vulnerable. UNIFEM, in collaboration with UNAIDS, has developed this comprehensive gender and HIV/AIDS web portal to provide up-to-date information on the gender dimensions of the HIV/AIDS epidemic.
Website of the Special Rapporteur of the Commission on Human Rights on the right of everyone to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health
Every country in the world is now party to at least one human rights treaty that addresses health-related rights, including the right to health and a number of rights related to conditions necessary for health. Health and human rights has been designated as a cross-cutting activity in WHO. Ethics, Trade, Human Rights and Law (ETH) within Sustainable Development and Healthy Environments (SDE) is the focal point within the Organization for human rights.
Section 2: Reports
This World Health Organization report presents data on progress on the health goals and targets and looks beyond the numbers to analyse why improvements in health have been slow and to suggest what must be done to change this. The report points to weak and inequitable health systems as a key obstacle, including particularly a crisis in health personnel and the urgent need for sustainable health financing.
The story of the HIV/AIDS crisis in Africa, which has already claimed more than 20 million lives, is one of massive neglect and denial. Millions of Africans had already died before the continent's AIDS epidemic even registered on the global radar screen or was publicly recognized as a problem by decision-makers in affected countries... Read the Human Rights Watch publication: Policy Paralysis: A Call for Action on HIV/AIDS-Related Human Rights Abuses Against Women and Girls in Africa.
The World Health Organisation estimates that one-third of the world's population are without the access to medicines they need. Increasing access to essential medicines is a critical part of the global effort to improve health in the developing world and to tackle key diseases such as HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria.
Universal primary education (UPE) could save at least 7 million young people from contracting HIV over a decade. However, without dramatic increases in aid to education, Africa will not be able to get every child into school for another 150 years. This report sets out why UPE is crucial to halting the spread of HIV/AIDS, and outlines what both rich and poor countries need to do now to enable millions of children to learn to survive.
In August 2005, 50 preeminent international leaders from the public, private, and nonprofit sectors came together at the Aspen Institute for a roundtable, "The Private Sector in the Fight against Global Poverty." The roundtable was co-chaired by Mary Robinson.
The central thrust of this UN Millennium Project report - is that dramatic, meaningful, sustainable progress toward decreasing child and maternal mortality requires an intense focus on improving health systems. The authors highlight that change is possible and they advance a comprehensive action plan that recommends the rapid and equitable sale-up of interventions such as integrated management of childhood illness, the universal provision of emergency obstetric care and sexual and reproductive health services, and the provision of strengthened health systems.
Section 3: Books
What do Russia, Zaire, Los Angeles, and - most likely - your community have in common? Each is woefully unprepared to deal with a major epidemic, whether it's caused by bioterrorism or by new or reemerging diseases resistant to antibiotics. In Betrayal of Trust, Laurie Garrett exposes the shocking weaknesses in our medical system and the ramifications of a world suddenly much smaller, yet still far apart when it comes to wealth and attention to health.
Paul Farmer has battled AIDS in rural Haiti and deadly strains of drug-resistant tuberculosis in the slums of Peru. A physician-anthropologist with more than fifteen years in the field, Farmer writes from the front lines of the war against these modern plagues and shows why, even more than those of history, they target the poor.
As a specialist in infectious diseases, Farmer's goal is nothing less than redressing the "steep gradient of inequality" in medical service to the desperately poor. His work establishing a complex of public health facilities on the central plateau of Haiti forms the keystone to efforts that now encompass initiatives on three continents. Farmer and a trio of friends began in the 1980s by creating a charitable foundation called Partners in Health (PIH, or Zanmi Lasante in Creole), armed with passionate conviction and $1 million in seed money from a Boston philanthropist...
Pathologies of Power uses harrowing stories of life - and death - in extreme situations to interrogate our understanding of human rights. Paul Farmer, a physician and anthropologist with twenty years of experience working in Haiti, Peru, and Russia, argues that promoting the social and economic rights of the world's poor is the most important human rights struggle of our times.