Mothers no longer worry about their children contracting polio. Vast regions of Africa are now habitable because river blindness is under control. In Thailand, a health initiative successfully headed off what seemed destined to be a massive AIDS epidemic. And in Sri Lanka, women can give birth without fear of dying.
These successes are among the seventeen large-scale, successful health interventions documented in Millions Saved: Proven Successes in Global Health, a new book from the Center for Global Development. From the elimination of measles in southern Africa, to the reduction of child diarrheal deaths in Egypt, Millions Saved proves that far-reaching global health success is possible even in the poorest of countries, in the face of grinding poverty and weak health systems. Former US President Jimmy Carter noted that “Millions Saved proves that commitment and compassion can bring dramatic, large-scale improvements in the health of people around the world.”
Millions Saved provides both inspiration in the face of many daunting global health challenges, and policy-relevant information about how major successes can be achieved in the future.
On December 7, the Center for Global Development formally launched the book at the Kaiser Family Foundation. Author and Senior Fellow Ruth Levine and Sir George Alleyne, former Director of the Pan America Health Organization, gave an overview of Millions Saved. They were followed by a panel discussion with Dr. Boakye Boatin, Former Director, Onchocerciasis Control Program; Robert Mallett, Senior Vice President of Corporate Affairs, Pfizer; Allen Moore, Deputy Chief of Staff and Policy Director, Office of Senator Bill Frist; and Rajiv Shah, Deputy Director for Policy and Finance, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Jackie Judd, Vice-President and Senior Advisor for Communications, Kaiser Family Foundation, moderated the event.