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How Businesses Can Tackle Global Health hero

How Partnerships Can Tackle Global Health Challenges

Despite significant progress in recent decades, global health issues—such as infectious diseases and lack of access to health care systems—still inflict immense suffering around the globe. This is especially true in the poorest parts of the world. If organizations in the public, private, and social sectors collaborate in new ways, they can make a bigger-than-ever impact on these challenges.

Epidemics and other global health threats affect individuals, families, and societies, and inflict costs that weaken the entire world economy. The numbers are staggering:

12 billion spent in direct costs related to malaria

The CDC cites $12 billion is spent annually in direct costs related to malaria, with much more lost in economic growth.

216 million people infected with malaria in 2016

In 2016 alone, 216 million people were infected with malaria, and 450,000 died. More than two-thirds of all malaria deaths are in children younger than five years old.

26,000 recorded ebola cases by May 2015

The 2014 Ebola outbreak in West Africa spread fast—with more than 26,000 suspected or confirmed cases recorded by May 2015.

Zika outbreaks have occurred in 69 countries

Zika outbreaks have occurred in 69 countries, and evidence indicates that the virus is becoming endemic in many parts of the world.

African continent has 2% of the world's doctors

The African continent has as much as 54% of the world’s communicable diseases—but only 2% of the world’s doctors.

61% of world's citizens lack access to safely managed sanitation

Some 61% of the world’s citizens—4.5 billion people—lack access to safely managed sanitation, such as toilets.

Three Ways Organizations Can Help Solve Global Health Challenges

As organizations in every sector rally to achieve the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals, three new approaches can help them surmount these and other global health challenges:

  1. Learn from other sectors. Aid agencies can take a page from private-sector approaches, such as human-centered design and consumer insights, to tackle low-quality health care in emerging economies.
  2. Create proactive partnerships. Governments can partner with corporations in emergency preparedness and response efforts before a crisis hits.
  3. Embrace disruption. Forward-thinking companies across the value chain can embrace disruptive technologies that improve global health and tap into valuable revenue streams.

These and other innovations could help make health care systems in lower income countries more efficient, effective, and adaptive by enabling them to leapfrog over long development timelines. By making these critical changes, emerging economies can thereby accomplish much more with much less.

Combating global health challenges will never be easy. But by forging new partnerships that leverage their diverse and complementary capabilities and embracing new technologies, organizations can come together to ease the widespread suffering caused by these health problems.

Learn More About Global Health

Improving Global Health Using Private Sector Approaches

Improving Global Health Using Private Sector Approaches

A Unique Impact in Global Health

Imaginer un nouvel avenir pour les systèmes de santé en Afrique

Read More About Our Impact in Global Health

A New Vision for Fighting Malaria teaser

A New Vision for Fighting Malaria

BCG collaborates with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to shift the world’s focus from controlling the disease to eradicating it.

Smarter Ways to Fight Ebola teaser

Smarter Ways to Fight Ebola

Working closely with the World Health Organization, BCG supported the initial design of the Ebola response and developed a novel 30-60-90 day plan to get the epidemic under control.

Meet Some of BCG's Experts in Global Health

BCG's consultants and industry experts focusing on global health continue to partner with leading social organizations, corporations, nonprofits, and philanthropic bodies to arrive at solutions for epidemics and health care access. These are some of our experts on this topic.

Mathieu Lamiaux

Managing Director & Senior Partner, Paris and Nairobi

  • Social impact and global health
  • Public health in developing countries
  • Sales force effectiveness
  • Go-to-market advantage in health care
  • Health care
  • Global public health
  • Digital health
  • Innovation ecosystem development
  • Leads BCG's global health topic globally
  • Global public health
  • Strategy development
  • Portfolio management
Impact social

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