Health and Healthcare in Emerging Market Countries
Current resources available for health are higher than ever before. The global health economy is growing faster than gross domestic product (GDP), having increased its share from 8.0% to 8.6% of the world’s GDP between 2000 and 2005. In absolute terms, adjusted for inflation, this represents a 35% growth in the world’s expenditure on health over a five‐year period. Understanding and knowledge intensity of health are growing rapidly. As a result of the accelerated technological revolution, the potential for improving health and transforming health literacy in a better‐educated and modernizing global society is proliferating. A global stewardship is emerging: from intensified exchanges between countries, often in recognition of shared threats, challenges or opportunities; from growing solidarity; and from the global commitment to eliminate poverty exemplified in the Millennium Development Goals.1
Good health promotes economic growth and social stability, while reducing poverty and income inequality. It has been suggested that much of the burden of poor health in countries and between countries rests with overall health system inefficiency, inadequate funding and inequitable access to health care services. Although many emerging economies would like to expand investment in their national health care systems to take full advantage of the relationship between health and productivity, growing evidence indicates that a fundamental restructuring will also be necessary to improve their systems' performance in order for these economic and social benefits to be realized.