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Int J Equity Health. 2013 Sep 11;12:78. doi: 10.1186/1475-9276-12-78.

Taking stock of Myanmar's progress toward the health-related Millennium Development Goals: current roadblocks, paths ahead.

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Department of Community and Global Health, Graduate School of Medicine, The University of Tokyo, 7-3-1 Hongo, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 113-0033, Japan.


Myanmar is a developing country with considerable humanitarian needs, rendering its pursuit of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) an especially high priority. Yet progress to date remains under-examined on key fronts. Particularly within the three health-related MDGs (MDGs 4, 5, and 6), the limited data reported point to patchy levels of achievement. This study was undertaken to provide an overview and assessment of Myanmar's progress toward the health-related MDGs, along with possible solutions for accelerating health-related development into 2015 and beyond. The review highlights off-track progress in the spheres of maternal and child health (MDGs 4 and 5). It also shows Myanmar's achievements toward MDG 6 targets--in the areas of HIV/AIDS, malaria, and tuberculosis. Such achievements are especially notable in that Myanmar has been receiving the lowest level of official development assistance among all of the least developed countries in Asia. However, to make similar progress in MDGs 4 and 5, Myanmar needs increased investment and commitment in health. Toward moving forward with the post-2015 development agenda, Myanmar's government also needs to take the lead in calling for attention from the World Health Organization and its global development partners to address the stagnation in health-related development progress within the country. In particular, Myanmar's government should invest greater efforts into health system strengthening to pave the road to universal health coverage.

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