Los beneficios económicos del control de las enfermedades

San Francisco – Grandes áreas del mundo no han disfrutado el notable avance mundial en condiciones de sanidad que ha ocurrido en el último siglo. De hecho, millones de muertes en naciones empobrecidas se pueden evitar con opciones de prevención y tratamiento que el mundo rico ya utiliza.

Este año diez millones de niños morirán en países de ingresos bajos a medios. Si los índices de mortalidad infantil fueran los mismos que en los países desarrollados, esta cifra sería de menos de un millón. A la inversa, si los índices de mortalidad infantil fueran los de los países ricos hace apenas 100 años, la cifra sería 30 millones.

La diferencia clave entre hoy y entonces no es so los ingresos sino el conocimiento técnico acerca de las causas de las enfermedades y las intervenciones para prevenirlas, o al menos sus síntomas más perniciosos. Los medios actuales para mejorar la salubridad son tan eficaces y poco costosos que las condiciones de salud podrían ser razonablemente buenas incluso en los países pobres, si las autoridades invirtieran fondos relativamente pequeños en los lugares adecuados.

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