Larry Summers: We must act on global health because millions of lives are at stake

One of the things I am proudest of having done in Washington was having the idea as chief economist of the World Bank that the bank should devote its annual World Development Report to making the case for improving both the quantity and quality of global health investment. The 1993 report produced by a team led by Dean Jamison proved more influential than I could have hoped, not least because it drew Bill Gates into the global health arena.

The report made a strong case that the benefits of the right health investments far exceed the costs.  Indeed, I believe the moral and economic case for investments in health care–both prevention and treatment–is as or more compelling than in any other area in the developing world. The dramatic declines in child mortality and increases in life expectancy demonstrate that policy can make an immense difference.

– The Washington Post

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