Research shows budget reduction targets and public sector caps, insisted on by the IMF as loan conditions, result in reduced health spending and medical ‘brain drain’ in developing West African nations.
An analysis of a new drug’s journey to market, published today in the BMJ, shines a light on financial practices that see some major pharmaceutical companies relying on a cycle of acquisitions, profits from high prices, and shareholder-driven manoeuvres that threatens access to medicines for current and future patients.
Researchers describe IMF as having an “escalating commitment to hypocrisy”, as study reveals that strict lending conditions have returned to pre-crisis levels, while ‘pro-poor’ targets frequently go unmet.
Lawrence King (Department of Sociology) and Piotr Ozieranski (University of Bath) discuss how EU member states use complex policy instruments to determine how much they are willing to pay the pharmaceutical industry for its products.
Researchers have developed a new technique that trawls the enormous amounts of public procurement data now available across the EU to highlight unscrupulous uses of public funds: from national and regional levels to individual contracts, companies and politicians.
Researchers criticise reforms advocated by IMF for chronically under-funded and insufficiently staffed health systems in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone. They say these policies contributed to “lack of preparedness” of West African health systems to cope with disease and emergencies such as Ebola.
New research suggests public health in developing countries may be better improved by reducing illiteracy rather than raising average income.