The Lancet Commission on Investing in Health (CIH) was established to make the case for unprecedented health gains by 2035 – the possibility of a “grand convergence” that would dramatically close the global health gap in key areas, such as child and maternal mortality rates. The CIH was chaired by former US Treasury Secretary Larry Summers and Professor Dean Jamison.
SEEK supported the Lancet Commission on Investing in Health to translate its findings into actionable policy recommendations for donor and country governments. The assignment was built around financial analyses of current donor trends. These were then combined with the policy recommendations to form engagement strategies and organize outreach activities to ensure that the Commission’s recommendations gain traction among donors.
As part of this work, SEEK led research on assessing the allocation of aid by donors according to a new aid classification framework that it developed specifically for the project. With this framework, the SEEK team developed the first-ever analysis of investment in global functions for health (including pandemic preparedness and response, and R&D for poverty-related and neglected diseases). The team then compared those with more country-specific investments, such as health systems strengthening. For this work, the team used a broad range of data sources, including two public databases on health financing (OECD DAC CRS and G-FINDER), and established a global estimate of total donor support for global health functions.
The study resulted in a Lancet publication and further work commissioned by the Japan Global Health Working Group, whose findings were subsequently published and incorporated into the recommendations for global health at the G7 summit hosted by Japan. Follow-on work also influenced the global health agenda of the G20 meeting in Germany in 2017, reminding the world of the importance to invest in international collective action for epidemic and pandemic preparedness.
The work on global public goods for health and other critical global functions continues. Together with the Center for Policy Impact in Global Health at Duke University, led by Professor Gavin Yamey, SEEK provides regular support to the Working Group on International Collective Action for Health, chaired by Larry Summers and Dean Jamison.