Study finds ‘free’ health care DOES improve health outcomes

In the increasingly heated debate swirling around the global movement for Universal Health Coverage, the experts are dueling over some pretty equivocal data. If the poor have free access to health care, does their health improve? Some say the evidence isn’t there. But is this debate missing the forest for the trees?

Lies, damned lies, statistics and inequality metrics

One of the more interesting debates out there right now is not so much about telling lies as it is about which statistics to use for measuring if we’re making the world a better place. Metrics on poverty tell us we’re making progress, yet wealth inequality is increasing in most parts of the world. Metrics tell us we’re producing more food on the planet than ever before, yet more than a billion will go to bed tonight hungry.

Global health boomerang – The risk of seeing past & present as prologue

One of the problems in measuring death and disability rates is it’s much more difficult to measure poverty’s role in all this. Arguably, the task of global health is to focus on the diseases of poverty as opposed to any and all disease – and to establish metrics for what’s actually do-able in addition to measuring death and disability. Forget about that new CT scanner. People are dying for lack of access to drugs, lack of food and water.

Guest Op-Ed: Water projects everywhere, but little accountability

Having worked in the nonprofit field for over 20 years, I know that in order to raise funds there is a temptation to over-simplify problems and solutions. In today’s information-saturated world we have less than two seconds to make an impression on a potential donor who visits our website. That leaves little room for telling the whole story, which takes longer than two seconds and doesn’t always help us raise funds.

Philanthrocapitalists propose a Social Progress Index

Measurement, in case you didn’t know it, is the new black for the aid and development community. It’s true that innovation, as a buzzword anyway, hasn’t gone out of fashion yet and social entrepreneurship is still hot – despite the fact that few seem able to define it. But measurement is definitely this year’s favored wrap for the hip humanitarian. Now, it’s the Social Progress Index.

1 2