Intended for healthcare professionals


Are cost effective interventions enough to achieve the millennium development goals?

BMJ 2005; 331 doi: (Published 10 November 2005) Cite this as: BMJ 2005;331:1093
  1. Suwit Wibulpolprasert, senior advisor on health economics (,
  2. Viroj Tangcharoensathien, director, International Health Policy Program,
  3. Churnrurtai Kanchanachitra, director
  1. Ministry of Public Health, Tivanond Road, Nonthaburi 11000, Thailand
  2. Ministry of Public Health, Tivanond Road, Nonthaburi 11000, Thailand
  3. Institute for Population and Social Research, Mahidol University, Salaya, Phutthamonthon, Nakhorn Pathom 73170, Thailand

    Money, infrastructure, and information are also vital

    At a high level forum in Paris this month policy makers are meeting to discuss the financial sustainability and coordination of activities essential for achieving the millennium development goals. Building on other targets set in the 1990s, such as those at the 1990 UN children's summit, these ambitious goals agreed by 189 countries aim to markedly reduce poverty and hunger and improve education and health throughout the world by 2015. But many less developed countries, especially in sub-Saharan Africa and south Asia, are falling short of the target to reduce child mortality by 4.4% a year, the rate required to cut deaths among children less than 5 years old by two thirds (from the 1990 level) by 2015.1

    To invest effectively in achieving the goals policy makers need robust evidence. Here, in a series of articles in the BMJ, David Evans and colleagues provide that evidence.2 w1-w7 Along with other work,3 these papers clearly show that important cost effective interventions, such as the integrated management of childhood illness (IMCI), are not being implemented adequately.4 5

    To ensure that the …

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