Online Program

Global inequity death toll: Targeting global health equity and estimating the burden of inequity

Monday, November 4, 2013 : 5:15 p.m. - 5:30 p.m.

Juan Garay, MD, MPH, MSc, Center for Global Public Health at UC Berkeley, European Union/ UC Berkeley, Brussels, Belgium
Laura Harris, MPH, School of Public Health, Maternal and Child Health, University of California, Berkeley, Berkeley, CA
Michelle Beam, MPH, School of Public Health, Infectious Disease and Vaccinology, University of California, Berkeley, Berkeley, CA
Simona Zompi, MD, PhD, UC Berkeley Center for Global Public Health, Berkeley, CA
Introduction: Researchers and policymakers have called for standardized definitions and measures of health inequity that recognize health inequities as health differences associated with other dimensions of social power. Income is a key dimension of power, and is systematically associated with health outcome disparities at individual and group levels. Health indicators of high-income countries can be considered a proxy measure for the highest attainable standard of health. The burden of global health inequity can be defined as the gap between the present state of the world's health and the ideal state in which all countries would enjoy the best standard of health. Methods: Using UN country estimates of mortality rates since 1990, the Global Inequity Death Toll (GIDT) was constructed as a measure of global health inequity between multi-country income groups. The GIDT is the difference between the current number of annual deaths and potential number of deaths if average mortality rates of the high-income group were applied to all countries. Results/conclusions: The analysis shows that one in three deaths globally – close to twenty million in 2008 – are due to global health inequity. This burden has not improved in absolute or relative terms since 1990. These findings demonstrate the need for reform in the global health framework, with a greater focus on equity. The GIDT is a measure of inequity easily understood by civil society and politicians, and can be an important advocacy tool. This analysis will be standardized by age with Global Burden of Disease data.

Learning Areas:

Advocacy for health and health education
Biostatistics, economics

Learning Objectives:
Describe the purpose of the Global Inequity Death Toll (GIDT) Explain how to calculate the GIDT Formulate a way that the GIDT could be used to advocate for health equity

Keyword(s): Measuring Social Inequality, Advocacy

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am a student in a masters in public health program, and contributed to the conceptualization and analysis of the measure in the proposal. I have focused my studies on global health equity. I have experience supporting global health programs, mostly in reproductive health. I have also worked in partnership with ministries of health and UN agencies in several countries to generate health statistics.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.

Back to: 3451.0: Advocacy & global health