SDG 3 - Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages


By Corina Rodríguez Enríquez, DAWN


Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) have been promoted as mechanisms to expand financing for development, opening up business opportunities to the private sector in sectors where public provision for decades was considered essential to guarantee rights. The healthcare sector is one good example.

Evidence from different countries of the global South shows that, instead of improving the coverage and quality of health provision and making it more efficient, PPPs have contributed to deepening the economic concentration in healthcare provision, making its [...]


By Daniel Bertossa, Public Services International (PSI)


Around the world, frontline public service workers continue to receive praise and support for their vital role in responding to the COVID-19 crisis. Yet these underfunded public services and brutal working conditions are not inevitable. They are the result of decades of deliberate erosion of our public services through budget cuts, privatization and understaffing.

Undermining the quality and accessibility of public services has been part of a deliberate strategy to loosen the deep political commitment our communities have to [...]


By Mira Bierbaum, Thomas Gebauer and Nicola Wiebe, Global Coalition for Social Protection Floors


The health and socioeconomic crisis caused by COVID-19 has shown in a dramatic fashion that we are only as safe as the most vulnerable among us. Despite previous legal and policy commitments and laudable progress in many countries, only between one-third and one-half of the world’s population were covered by essential health services.[1] More than 55 percent had no access to social protection at all, with devastating consequences for societies worldwide.[2] Millions of people have already [...]


By Corina Rodríguez Enríquez – DAWN


Feminist organizations have insisted for decades on the importance of recognizing the systemic role of care work. This invisible work is indispensable for reproducing the labour force[1] and more broadly for sustaining life.[2] The COVID-19 pandemic has transformed this feminist message into an accepted truth.

The new coronavirus has forcefully exposed the fragility of human life. All of us face the risk of catching a disease that can kill us. In this context, it is also made very visible that [...]


By Carilee Osborne and Pamela Choga, Institute for Economic Justice


South Africa was initially praised for getting ahead of the pandemic by beginning preparations before cases were confirmed, and instituting a strict lockdown to slow the spread of infections. However, the government failed to institute adequate measures to safeguard people’s incomes, protect their well-being and support the economy. The socioeconomic impact has swiftly outweighed the impact of the virus itself, with the economy expected to contract by at least 7.2 percent of GDP. Livelihoods have been deeply impacted: for [...]


By Pablo Iturralde, Centro de Derechos Económicos y Sociales (Ecuador)*


In Ecuador, the impact of the coronavirus pandemic is one of the most devastating in the world, severely exacerbated by IMF-backed policies of austerity and structural adjustment implemented before the crisis. Yet, even now, Ecuador is undergoing further IMF-mandated structural reforms that dismantle its health system and suppress economic growth, just when it is necessary to increase public investment and delay fiscal austerity measures to overcome the crisis caused by the pandemic.

The evident weakness of the [...]


By Vanita Nayak Mukherjee, DAWN


Kerala is a densely populated state of 35 million people in South West India. Led by the Left Democratic Front, it stands out among India’s 28 states for its successful performance during COVID-19. As a first step, in mid-January Kerala prepared itself on the health front by creating a Corona Control Room with 18 task forces to combat the coronavirus. By the end of March, a set of thoughtful measures were crafted to mitigate the adverse effects of a stringent lockdown on people’s lives and livelihoods, with a commitment of US$ 271 million (Rs.20,000 crores). [...]


By Daria Cibrario, Public Services International[1]


“Stay at home”, advised as key in the fight against COVID-19, implies there is a home to stay in. But in absence of prompt, extraordinary measures to support income and mitigate the social impact of the crisis, many millions around the world will be evicted or dispossessed as they become unable to pay their rents and mortgages. Shockingly, some are now even losing their accommodation because of the stigma associated with having fallen ill with the virus or because they work in frontline public services such as doctors and nurses.[2]

Well [...]


By Nicoletta Dentico, Health Innovation in Practice, and Karolin Seitz, Global Policy Forum 1

In the name of a pro-poor agenda, venture philanthropists have played an essential role in tailoring a new narrative around global health and food. The productivist and free-market vision that drives the key players in the philanthropic sector has helped shape up a new political culture in these domains that is increasingly skewed toward the commodification and medicalization of both health and food, and their distancing from the domain that they constitutionally belong to: the human rights domain. [...]


By K M Gopakumar, Third World Network (TWN)

A strong and dynamic World Health Organisation (WHO) is critical for the achievement of the SDGs, especially SDG 3 on health and well-being. The WHO constitution mandates the organization "to act as the directing and co-ordinating authority on international health work”. 1 However, its ability to fulfil this mandate is circumscribed by the nature of its financial resources. WHO’s biennial budget for 2018-2019 is US$ 4.42 billion, 2 just over a quarter of the total sales of the top-selling medicine Humira (Adalimumab) in 2016 (US$ 16.08 billion). 3