Misalignment between perceptions and actual global burden of disease: evidence from the US population
Siegel, Karen R.
Kishore, Sandeep P.
MetadataShow full item record
CitationSiegel, Karen R., Andrea B. Feigl, Sandeep P. Kishore, and David Stuckler. 2011. Misalignment between perceptions and actual global burden of disease: evidence from the US population. Global Health Action 4.
AbstractSignificant funding of health programs in low-income countries comes from external sources, mainly private donors and national development agencies of high-income countries. How these external funds are allocated remains a subject of ongoing debate, as studies have revealed that external funding may misalign with the underlying disease burden. One determinant of the priorities set by both private donors and development agencies is the perceptions of populations living in high-income countries aboutwhich diseases are legitimate for global health intervention. While research has been conducted on the priorities expressed by recipient communities, relatively less has been done to assess those of the donating country. To investigate people’s beliefs about the disease burden in high-income countries, we compared publicly available data from U.S. surveys of people’s perceptions of the leading causes of death in developing countries against measures of the actual disease burden from the World Health Organization. We found little correlation between the U.S. public’s perception and the actual disease burden, measured as either mortality or disability-adjusted life years. While there is potential for reverse causality, so that donor programs drive public perceptions, these findings suggest that increasing the general population’s awareness of the true global disease burden could help better align global health funding with population health needs.
Citable link to this pagehttp://nrs.harvard.edu/urn-3:HUL.InstRepos:8579871
- SPH Scholarly Articles