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Int J Health Plann Manage. 2003 Apr-Jun;18(2):97-104.

Globalization, global health, and access to healthcare.

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Department of Global Public Health, School of Public Health and Health Services, George Washington University, Washington, DC, USA.


It is now commonly realized that the globalization of the world economy is shaping the patterns of global health, and that associated morbidity and mortality is affecting countries' ability to achieve economic growth. The globalization of public health has important implications for access to essential healthcare. The rise of inequalities among and within countries negatively affects access to healthcare. Poor people use healthcare services less frequently when sick than do the rich. The negative impact of globalization on access to healthcare is particularly well demonstrated in countries of transitional economies. No longer protected by a centralized health sector that provided free universal access to services for everyone, large segments of the populations in the transition period found themselves denied even the most basic medical services. Only countries where regulatory institutions are strong, domestic markets are competitive and social safety nets are in place, have a good chance to enjoy the health benefits of globalization.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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