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Interview with Catherine Mellor, Lead on Global Health, US Chamber of Commerce

Catherine Mellor is Executive Director of the Global Health Initiative at the US Chamber of Commerce. We have talked to Catherine about the G20 and its efforts in putting Health on the agenda.

The German G20 Presidency has placed Global Health on the agenda for the first time. Why is the G20 the right arena to address these issues?

The management of modern disease in a globalized world, both communicable and non-communicable, will impact a population’s ability to grow economically, to sustain financial stability, and to move up the development chain. For that reason, we applaud Germany’s leadership in adding health to the agenda of the G20 and we support the effort to improve coordination among the member countries and global financial institutions.

If could choose one policy action the G20 agrees one, which one would it be?

There are many opportunities for collaboration that must be prioritized when it comes to global health, but the one area where we feel the G20 has the most to offer is in the focus on sustainable health financing.  Finding new and innovative ways to pay for a greater reliance on health services is of paramount importance for our aging world.

To continue to balance the supply of healthcare needs with the shift in demographics towards older populations, we need support from the World Bank in better understanding alternative financing schemes. This includes a review of successful economic models in healthcare delivery, regulatory environments which encourage efficient and effective care, and the application of financing mechanisms which benefit the least developed. Creating best practices in these areas is of particular importance to countries which are struggling with the implementation of universal health insurance and the changing needs of aged patients.

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