Short can do that when we know what the

Short Talk on world health care

Good
Afternoon everyone, I am gonna talk about world health care. On one hand we are
happy with the fact that world is now living longer, the prospects for a baby
born in 2018 are much brighter than they were in 1990.  Now a girl can expect to live to 69 years and
a boy to 75 gaining a seven years compared to 1990.The global mortality rate
has decreased by 28%.  Since 2005 alone,
deaths from both HIV/AIDS and malaria have been reduced by 40%, and maternal
mortality by 30%. 

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Well,
it’s not all happy situation, decline in mortality from communicable diseases
has corresponded with a rise in deaths from non-communicable diseases. 7 out of
10 people die because of that. Heart diseases, certain types of cancer, Alzheimer’s,
deaths because of these have risen.

So
what we can do about this? Or let me ask you a bigger question? How do you
fight a disease? Some of you will say, let’s make a vaccine or drug? Certainly
that’s a necessary thing to do but that’s just not enough. We can do that when
we know what the problem is. But there are situations when we don’t even know the
problem. Around 2.6
million babies die around the world before they’re even one month
old. 2.6 million! That’s a big number and you know what more shocking is, in
too many cases, we simply don’t know. We have no idea.  We are researcher, we like to fix things. But we
can’t fix what we can’t define. 

Now, let
us talk about HIV, some of us work on that. As I said, death from HIV has
reduced by 40% since 2005. Things look better now but still it remains a
terrible global challenge. Worldwide, about 17 million women are living
with HIV. We know that when these women become pregnant, they can
transfer the virus to their baby. We also know in the absence of
therapy, half those babies will not survive until the age of two. But
we know that antiretroviral therapy can virtually guarantee that she will
not transmit the virus to the baby. So what do we do? Would that mean we
test and treat every pregnant woman in the world? That would do the
job. But it’s just not practical. So instead, we can target those areas
where HIV rates are the highest. And you won’t believe, this approach to a
public health problem has cut by nearly half HIV transmission from
mothers to baby in the last five years.

Let me
talk little about disease eradication. In 1977, smallpox was successfully eradicated,
it was a big day for world health and everyone was excited by the possibility
of a disease-free world but since then we’ve eradicated well nothing not one
human affecting disease and it’s not for lack of trying take polio for example
we know how it spreads and we have the vaccine so why are we not able to
eradicate it. Well, having the vaccine is only half the battle and the other
half may involve creating world peace. Because war-torn countries and terrorists
controlled areas are especially difficult to vaccinate, many of them are
impossible. You would be wondering how this topic has suddenly come here. But
simply put, you can do anything on a global stage unless we are united. Unless
we all feel in the same way.

How
many of you have heard about Chan and Zuckerburg initiative? Billionaire
philanthropists had declared their intention to cure,
prevent or manage all human disease before the end of the century. Initiative
involves spending 3 billion dollar for research purpose. It is highly ambitious
but it’s not completely ridiculous. A century is a long time in medicine. Most
babies born in 1900 did not live to see the age of 50. Medicine has not been
the only reason for the dramatic rise in life expectancy since, but it was a
crucial factor. By 2100 we’ll be shocked by how much we’ve achieved, and we’ll
be more shocked with initiatives like this.

Are
scientific breakthroughs only things that we need, well answer is certainly no.
As of now, most of the disease in the low income countries does not require a
scientific breakthrough. World health organization has made it clear. According
to them what all it takes are facilities and infrastructures. So what do you do
about it? Well you might think spending on healthcare is a one way to solve it?
Yes, it is but it’s not that simple either.  

Let’s
take United States for an example. They spend 15% of their GDP on health care (They
spend 10 times more than the second leading country in the world). But what we
know is, out of the top 50 countries on the planet with organized
health care systems, they rank 37th. What we need to know is more is
not more.

Let me
put all things together, every individual on this planet has a right to live,
we all agree with that and when we say that, we cannot ignore diseases. I have
talked a little about how we can fight it. For us, research is definitely one
of such solution but providing basic education, tackling malnutrition, providing
information technology and more importantly creating a world peace all are
equally important.  We have a facilities,
what we actually need is delivery guy who deliver all such facilities from
where it is available to where we need it. Who will be that guy? Whose responsibility
is this? Government, philanthropists, non-profit organization. I think its responsibility
of all of us. Together we can do great things that cannot be done otherwise and
together we can achieve pretty much anything we want.