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BRICS countries make ‘biggest health contributions’

March 27th, 2012
by Tania

A new report released at the 2012 BRICS Summit has revealed that the five newly advanced economic regions are doing the most to aid health and development in the poorest countries.

The BRICS alliance, which is the collective effort of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa, have been found to be injecting new resources, momentum and innovation into efforts to improve health in the world's poorest countries. The report is confirmation of the new role the alliance is playing in both global affairs and health and development.

The size and scope of their efforts have been found to grow significantly alongside economic growth, and although G7 countries provide more 'total assistance', the report found that the average annual growth in the BRICS' foreign assistance spending between 2005 and 2010 was more than ten times higher than that of the G7.

Dr. Blessed Okole, senior general manager for infrastructure and planning at South Africa's Technology Innovation Agency said: "Over the last decade, the BRICS have begun to transition from aid-dependent to emerging global actors with significant geopolitical influence.

"With some donors facing financial challenges, the BRICS will play an increasingly important role in improving health in less-developed countries."

The report was conducted by Global Health Strategies initiatives (GHSi), an international non-profit working to improve health in developing countries. It found that the approach of the BRICS countries varied to conventional help, which could largely be attributed to their own domestic experiences.

One of the most significant contributions has been in the way of multilateral health initiatives that have been pursued by nation states. Brazil has been influential in the set up of UNITAID, and Russia is a founding donor to the GAVI Alliance's Advanced Market Commitment on pneumococcal vaccines.

Rani Mullen, a Visiting Fellow at the Centre for Policy Research in New Delhi said: "The BRICS countries are already cooperating in areas such as health, agriculture, science and technology.

"As these collaborations continue to expand and deepen, they could have significant health impact and potentially transform the way countries work together to improve health in the developing world."

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Posted in Industry News, Life Science

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