After reading the WHO (2008) Copenhagen Conference document “Health systems, Health and Wealth: Assessing the Case for Investing in Health Systems”, consider the following dilemma. Health policy-makers have been under enormous pressure in recent years over concerns about financial sustainability and cost-containment. The resources available to any society are finite, but emerging evidence is recasting health systems not as a drain on those resources but as an opportunity to invest in the health of the population and in economic growth. Health systems, health and wealth are inextricably linked in a set of mutually reinforcing and dynamic relationships. This new paradigm offers an opportunity for a fundamental reassessment of the role of health systems in society. Please expound upon these three questions:
- How can we improve health, wealth and societal well-being by investing in health systems?
- How can we ensure that health systems are sustained in the future?
- How can we monitor, manage and improve performance so that health systems are as effective and efficient as possible?