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Independent research for global prosperity

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Bill GatesBill Gates announced at the opening session of the 2005 World Health Assembly that the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation would more than double its financing for key health research to $450 million.

In his speech to the world's health ministers, he said that the world had a "historic chance" to tame killer diseases. He said that a combination of "astonishing" scientific advances and rising global awareness of the suffering caused by disease gave real hope for progress.

Political systems in rich countries work well to fuel research and fund health care delivery, but only for their own citizens. The market works well in driving the private sector to conduct research and deliver interventions, but only for people who can pay.

Unfortunately, the political and market conditions that drive high quality health care in the developed world are almost entirely absent in the rest of the world. We have to make these forces work better for the world's poorest people.

See the full speech, and articles in Reuters and The Register.

Blogged from Accra, Ghana.

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CGD blog posts reflect the views of the authors, drawing on prior research and experience in their areas of expertise. CGD is a nonpartisan, independent organization and does not take institutional positions.