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Sunday, November 04, 2007

Winners announced in essay contest on equitable access

The Lancet and the Global Forum for Health Research have announced the winners of the 2007 essay contest on Equitable access: research challenges for health in developing countries.  From Friday's press release:

From a field of 289 entries, from 64 nationalities residing in 60 different countries, five entries have been chosen after a long and difficult judging process from a shortlist of 40. They are Seye Abimbola (Nigeria); Denise Nacif Pimenta (Brazil); Laura Sikstrom (Canada); Lee Yung Wong (Malaysia); and Zhang Lingling (China).

Abimbola’s essay, “Of patents and patients,” focuses on the inequitable access to life-saving drugs and the patent-system that makes such drugs so expensive, while Pimenta’s “Can the ‘North’ learn from developing countries: question or affirmation” is about how all countries can learn lessons from one another regarding information flow in the battle against chronic and infectious diseases.

Sikstrom’s “For the future, for tomorrow: evidence-based research in food-security interventions” addresses the difficult issues surrounding food security in the developing world and the links with child mortality and HIV disease progression. Wong’s “The face of equitable access: going beyond health to life for all” tells of the author’s inspiring meeting with a Burmese graduate who had devoted his life to helping HIV victims in his country. Finally, Lingling’s “Where have all the barefoot doctors gone in pursuing a more equitable new health-care system in China” discusses the famous barefoot doctors and inequality in healthcare across China.

Thirty-two of the submissions, including the five winning essays, are now online --all OA.  The paper most focused on OA is Anoop Dhamangaonkar, "Health research in developing countries:  challenges and possible solutions for its improvement" (pp. 50-53).