Last week, the CUNY Graduate School of Public Health and Health Policy was delighted to host Lawrence O. Gostin, JD, LLD as part of the Health Policy and Management lecture series.
Gostin is an internationally distinguished scholar on global health who serves as Faculty Director and Founding Chair at the O’Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law at Georgetown University.
In his talk Thursday, Imagining Global Health with Justice, Gostin emphasized the need for effective global governance for health and offered a blueprint for reform, based on the principle that the opportunity to live a healthy life is a basic human right.
“Global health seeks to improve all the major indicators of health, such as infant and maternal mortality and longevity,” Gostin said. “Global health with justice, however, requires that we look beyond improved health outcomes for the population as a whole. Although overall population health is vitally important, justice requires a significant reduction in health disparities between the well-off and the poor.”
To achieve global health with justice, Gostin said, major reforms of global health institutions and governments are needed to ensure better coordination, more transparency, and accountability. He illustrated the power of global health law with examples of case studies on AIDS, influenza, tobacco, and health worker migration.
Gostin said that CUNY SPH was the perfect place to host his talk, given the School’s mission to promote and sustain healthier populations around the world and to shape policy and practice in public health for all.
“CUNY SPH is unlike any other public health community in the world,” Gostin said. “Students don’t have to endebt themselves to attend and receive a world class education. My talk fell into the ‘sweet spot’ of CUNY SPH, which is the pursuit of national and global health, with justice, and paying particular attention to the needs of the most marginalized in society. The School’s faculty, staff, and students, should be proud of what they have accomplished collectively. I consider myself a friend and partner of the entire CUNY public health community.”