In global health, is 'disruption' a good thing?

What makes for a sound investment in global health? The answer is more complicated than you might think.

Some solutions — a new medication, technology or delivery mechanism, for instance — can have huge potential to improve health outcomes but at the same time, also be difficult to incorporate into the health systems already found within a country or a community. More systemic changes lack the headline-grabbing punch that the next wonder drug tends to invite.

Development practitioners must pay attention to a range of complex factors when they explore cost-effective and high-impact health solutions, and international organizations can play a role in bringing those pieces together, Amie Batson, chief strategy officer at PATH, told Devex recently.

In the below video interview that is part of our joint Best Buys in Global Health campaign with PSI, the global health NGO, Batson discusses what it takes to make the case for sound investments in health, and the tradeoffs different options often present.

Amie Batson, chief strategy officer at PATH, discusses the tradeoffs and challenges of determining a “best buy” in global health with Devex Editor Rolf Rosenkranz.

Innovative financing options can help reduce some of the uncertainty around new health solutions, but a lot of work remains to ensure those financing options benefit from — and contribute to — a business-enabling environment that can sustain supply and demand. PATH is exploring the use of innovation hubs to build that broader “ecosystem” within countries so that local markets can keep global health best buys on the shelves.

Amie Batson discusses PATH’s efforts to build a business-enabling environment for health innovations.

This story is part of Best Buys in Global Health, a campaign by PSI, PATH and Devex to highlight sound investments in global health. Find out more.

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About the author

  • Igoe michael 1

    Michael Igoe

    Michael Igoe is a Senior Reporter with Devex, based in Washington, D.C. He covers U.S. foreign aid, global health, climate change, and development finance. Prior to joining Devex, Michael researched water management and climate change adaptation in post-Soviet Central Asia, where he also wrote for EurasiaNet. Michael earned his bachelor's degree from Bowdoin College, where he majored in Russian, and his master’s degree from the University of Montana, where he studied international conservation and development.