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Access to care is viewed as a human right, but how to finance it is a hot topic, both in developed and in developing countries. Two of our colleagues react on the debate on international funding mechanisms with a plea for a global health insurance or health fund. According to the editorial in the Lancet, the classical divides between vertical-horizontal and Beveridge-Bismarck are becoming less relevant since many countries have mixed systems and all strategies contribute to the gradual process towards the final goal of universal health coverage. Equinet has examined the importance of private capital in the sub-Saharan African health sector, and comes to the conclusion that foreign private capital flows in this sector are very limited in reality.

Mental health is gaining momentum on the international health agenda and this is highly necessary, regarding the state of care for mentally ill in many countries. We selected two article from the Lancet, giving a perspective on this matter.

In < ?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags" />America, president Obama intervened in the debate of health reform, with an article in the New York Times and on the pulpit. Clinton has finished her Africa tour and we provide you with an overview of the health related issues she discussed.

While the influenza pandemic is still developing, the debate about the control strategies has already taken off. We focus on the appropriateness of communication strategies towards the public and the solidarity of high income countries to share their vaccine resources with the developing world.

Finally, we selected a comment in the Lancet on the European drug regulation policy and a call from the WHO to revitalize strategies to tackle diarrheal diseases as a leading cause of death.

Enjoy your reading.
Josefien van Olmen & Kristof de Coster, on behalf of David Hercot & Wim Van Damme

Health Financing and Access to care

1.  The Lancet: all for universal health coverage (viewpoint)

Laurie Garrett, A Mushtaque R Chowdhury, Ariel Pablos-Méndez


2. Global responsibilities for global health rights

Gorik Ooms, Wim Van Damme

3. Commercialisation of health and capital flows in east and southern Africa: Issues and implications

Greg Ruiters and Brett Scott


Mental Health

4. Movement for global mental health gains momentum

Editorial Lancet

5. Global mental health: a failure of humanity

Arthur Kleinman


American health Reform

6.  New York Times – Why we need health care reform

Barack Obama



7.  The Baltimore Sun – A moral obligation? Should the U.S. produce enough H1N1 flu vaccine to help developing countries?,0,7835912.story


8.  WHO Bulletin – Risk and outbreak communication: lessons from alternative paradigms

Thomas Abraham


Drugs regulation


9. European Commission takes on Big Pharma

André den Exter


Global Health News

10. Secretary of State Clinton’s Africa Visit


11.  WHO Bulletin report – Renewed call to action for diarrhoea treatment. Zinc and low osmolarity ORS for diarrhoea: a renewed call to action

Christa L Fischer Walker, Olivier Fontaine, Mark W Young & Robert E Black

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