The George Institute for Global Health, India in collaboration with the Southeast Asia Region of the International Working Group for Health Systems Strengthening (IWG) is proud to present their sixth iteration of the Global Lecture Series on “Health Equity in the SDG era: Perspectives from Southeast Asia”. With eminent panellists from diverse contexts in the domain of health equity. The presentations will bring diverse national experiences on health equity – oriented research, policy, and capacity-building initiatives from across the region.

Worldwide concern over disparity and inequities resulted in the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) commitment to “leave no one behind” the field of health equity research, with long origins in movements for social justice and health for all, is now increasingly established the world over. Progress on understanding health inequities and tackling them in a holistic and sustained fashion, however, has been uneven. Quite often, across regions, the lowest hanging fruit in tackling inequity have been chosen over more comprehensive, difficult, and participatory processes.

Despite sizeable social progress in the post-colonial period for several countries in the Southeast Asian region, the high burden of maternal and child mortality is joined by drivers of climate degradation, epidemiological transitions leading to heightened burdens of non-communicable diseases, challenges of over and under nutrition and health systems that, in many cases are chronically underfunded. The challenges of understanding and addressing health equity are clearly large, and those who have been at the frontlines of tackling these thorny issues may have some insights on what has worked, and what has not on the national and even regional scale.

Read the full article about health equity in Southeast Asia at AVPN.