Global Health challenges over the next 25 years

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Click here to read this article in French


According to The Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene (RSTMH), global health will face many growing challenges over the next 25 years. RSTMH polled specialists from the tropical medicine and global health community asking their opinion on what they think are the most pressing issues relating to global health.

The report offers a brief overview of specialists’ opinion at a time of political uncertainty and growing inequality.

Despite the fact of general negativity about recent global events, most of those surveyed are optimistic about global healthcare. When asked about which diseases will be eliminated over the next 25 years, 66.9 percent said polio followed by guinea worm (56.1 percent) and blinding trachoma (38.8 percent).

Nevertheless, it is important to keep in mind the future challenges facing global healthcare. These include climate change, growing drug resistance, emerging epidemics, and conflict. Another concern of the report is the increase of noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) such as cancer, cardiovascular disease, chronic respiratory diseases, and diabetes. These are responsible for 68 percent of global mortality.

The report also identifies five global health mega-trends that will have a large role in shaping health over the next 25 years: climate change, globalization, urbanization, demographics, and technology. All these challenges have to be in the mind of governments as they tackle global health issues.

The RSTMH provides recommendations to reduce healthcare inequalities around the world, and save and improve lives. One of the first priorities for global health specialists is to push for action to tackle climate change, as well as work together on reducing polluting emissions that cause health problems. For the purpose of curtailing NCDs, the majority surveyed strongly recommend that:

  • governments invest in prevention strategies,
  • adopt policies to reduce health inequality,
  • close the healthcare gap, and
  • have governments investing in new technology that would help communities and health professionals to do a more efficient job.

To read the full report, click here.

Image: by ar130405

Milinda Wannakula |Project Coordinator Specialising in International Relations Milinda Wannakula |Project Coordinator Specialising in International Relations

Driven by my desire to learn and understand international issues, I oriented my studies towards International Affairs, an academic background which required an analytical mind and helped me sharpen my communication skills in English and in French.

I have always wanted to help others; so, I headed for humanitarian and international organizations. As a project coordinator for diverse NGOs, I learned how to plan, organize and implement projects. During my internship at the Geneva International Peace Research Institute, we launched an international conference with researchers from all over the world. I had to take care of the logistics of the event and to manage my team. I also did the accounting of the event and booked all their flights and hotels for the participants. I had to multitask to meet tight deadlines. My versatility and my resistance to pressure allows me to find solutions quickly.

Now, I want to evolve in a stimulating environment and continue putting my skills to work for others. Rigorous and methodical, I am committed to always performing the tasks assigned to me with the smile that characterizes me

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