Equity in health is a pressing global concern. Disparities in health status and access to health care within and across countries are both a cause and a consequence of social inequality and economic hardship. Access to health services continues to be largely determined by socioeconomic factors, and financial protection against catastrophic health costs remains inadequate. Solutions have and will continue to be identified through evidence-based, and locally produced, research that addresses the issue of equity in health.
Three regional networks with a substantial history in research, capacity building and policy outreach in health equity, health financing and health delivery have teamed up to form the Global Network for Health Equity or GNHE (pronounced “Gini” as in “the Gini coefficient” ).
The purpose is to strengthen the opportunities and platforms for researchers from, and based in, low- and middle-income countries to significantly contribute to the search for solutions in health equity.
The three regional health equity networks that make up GNHE are:
- SHIELD (Strategies for Health Insurance for Equity in Less Developed Countries Network in Africa)
- EQUITAP (Equity in Asia-Pacific Health Systems Network in the Asia-Pacific
- LANET (Latin American Research Network on Financial Protection in the Americas).
The three networks encompass more than 100 researchers working in at least 35 research institutions across the globe.
GNHE is coordinated by three institutions collaborating in this project, namely: the Mexican Health Foundation (FUNSALUD); the Health Economics Unit of the University of Cape Town in South Africa; and the Institute for Health Policy based in Sri Lanka.
GNHE as well as each of the networks have received funding and institutional support from the International Development Research Centre of Canada (IDRC).