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Other Countries Can Learn From Rwanda’s Experience Improving Health Equity

Project Syndicate: A Formula for Health Equity
Agnes Binagwaho, vice chancellor of the University of Global Health Equity

“…[P]erhaps the most important factor behind [Rwanda’s] dramatic health care gains has been the national equity agenda, which sets targets for supporting the needy and tracks progress toward meeting them. … In working toward health equity, Rwanda has made accessibility a top priority. … As a result, the reach of health care coverage in Rwanda is high by global standards — all the more remarkable for a country that suffered the horrors of genocide a generation ago. … In just over two decades, thanks to homegrown solutions and international collaboration, Rwanda has dramatically reduced the burden of disease on its people and economy. As we look forward, our goal is to educate tomorrow’s leaders to build on the equitable health care system that we have created. This is the mission of the University of Global Health Equity, a new university based in rural Rwanda that has made fairness, collaboration, and innovation its guiding principles. … Through continued global cooperation, other countries, including developed ones, can learn to apply [the formula Rwanda used to improve health equity]” (11/8).

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.