Macroeconomics and Health Symposium in the Netherlands
A symposium hosted by the Royal Tropical Institute (KIT) Amsterdam and the Netherlands Government was held on 26 November 2002 to discuss macroeconomics and health. In the opening session, Rob Visser, Deputy Director of Social and Institutional Development at the Netherlands Ministry for Development Cooperation, highlighted the importance of CMH arguments when placed in the broader context of sustainable development and the Millennium Development Goals, and encouraged more debate on the options for improvements in health within countries. Dr Visser spoke of the constraints to scaling up action that would result in better health outcomes in poor countries and indicated strong Dutch support for the CMH arguments as a way to encourage more debate on, and analysis of, options for substantial improvements in health within countries.
During the symposium, discussions focused on the context within which the CMH Report was presented. Key topics included:
- More research on the circumstances where better health can result in prosperity
- Unified health planning within countries
- Clarity on the nature and role of health systems in each local or national setting
- Widen structure of development assistance
- Greater role for NGOs and advocacy networks at country and global levels.
Representatives of the Netherlands Government and KIT met with the WHO delegation and agreed to collaborate in widening the network of national and international NGOs working on CMH issues – especially those of the South.