Universal Health Coverage (UHC): Innovation, Equity and the New Economy of Health

  • Lead Research Team:  Ilona Kickbusch, Jeffrey Sturchio, Louis Galambos
  • Co-researchers: Tanya Mounier, Michaela Told, Lyndsey Canham, Christian Franz, Martina Szabo
  • Project owners: The Global Health Centre at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies in Geneva, the Johns Hopkins Institute for Applied Economics and the Study of Business Enterprise, and Rabin Martin
  • Project status: Ongoing until end 2017
  • Key Words: development, equity, health care, health economy, health financing, health governance, health systems, innovation, multi-sectoral cooperation, partnerships, universal health coverage

The entry point of this project is the insight that health and health care constitute a major economic force in most countries and that this economic relevance and power must be applied to support the goals of UHC.  While the global debate has moved towards accepting the concept of a "green economy", there is not as yet an accepted understanding of an “economy of health.” This project proposes to explore the concept of a health economy, to define its scope and to understand its implications for the evolution of UHC over the coming decades.  

The project will explore the key governance challenges that arise for country governments, donor organisations, the private sector, and civil society at the interface of the health economy and the drive to universal health coverage as a national responsibility of governments.
Starting from the unique perspective of the rapidly changing global health economy, the project will apply the lenses of innovation, equity and development to better understand if it is possible to bring together key market and government actors to take UHC further within a specific country context. What role do regulation, multi-sectorial cooperation, and partnerships play in achieving universal health coverage?  How do we differentiate between the financing of UHC and the provision of UHC?

The project is built on the notion of dialogue and will have both a research and a service orientation, including: literature reviews, situational analysis, innovation mapping, stakeholder analysis, writing and publication, and a series of events and policy dialogues.

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