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 Table of Contents  
LETTER TO EDITOR
Year : 2019  |  Volume : 2  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 114-115

Improving access to health-care services to improve the global life expectancy: world health organization's viewpoint


1 Vice-Principal Curriculum, Member of the Medical Education Unit and Institute Research Council, Department of Community Medicine, Shri Sathya Sai Medical College and Research Institute, Sri Balaji Vidyapeeth – Deemed to be University, Kancheepuram, Tamil Nadu, India
2 Department of Community Medicine, Shri Sathya Sai Medical College and Research Institute, Sri Balaji Vidyapeeth – Deemed to be University, Kancheepuram, Tamil Nadu, India

Date of Submission05-Apr-2019
Date of Decision03-May-2019
Date of Acceptance07-May-2019
Date of Web Publication9-Jul-2019

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Saurabh RamBihariLal Shrivastava
Vice-Principal Curriculum, Member of the Medical Education Unit and Institute Research Council, Department of Community Medicine, Shri Sathya Sai Medical College and Research Institute, Sri Balaji Vidyapeeth – Deemed to be University, Ammapettai, Nellikuppam,Chengalpet Taluk, Kancheepuram District, Tamil Nadu
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/SHB.SHB_16_19

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How to cite this article:
Shrivastava SR, Shrivastava PS. Improving access to health-care services to improve the global life expectancy: world health organization's viewpoint. Soc Health Behav 2019;2:114-5

How to cite this URL:
Shrivastava SR, Shrivastava PS. Improving access to health-care services to improve the global life expectancy: world health organization's viewpoint. Soc Health Behav [serial online] 2019 [cited 2019 Aug 24];2:114-5. Available from: http://www.shbonweb.com/text.asp?2019/2/3/114/262370



Dear Editor,

Over the decades, the average global life expectancy is gradually on the rise and is a welcome sign of the improvement in the health-care delivery indicators.[1],[2] In fact, since the start of the current century, the global life expectancy and healthy life expectancy at birth have improved by 5.5 and 4.8 years, respectively.[1] There are no doubts that income is a strong determinant of the life expectancy, with a life expectancy of 18 years lesser being reported among individuals living in low-income nations.[1],[2] Moreover, a wide range of environmental and societal factors together affect the life expectancy.[2]

However, the estimates for life expectancy have not shown a uniform rise, and it is of utmost importance to classify the available estimates depending on the age, gender, and income, as it is must to understand the reasons for a proportional rise in specific groups.[1],[2],[3] Further, the available information can be utilized to take evidence-based policy decisions which will aid the policy-makers and program managers to accomplish universal health coverage and give an opportunity for all sections of society to live in a safe and healthy world.[4] It has been reported that women outlive men across all the settings in the world, especially in the high-income nations.[1] In addition, the gap reported between the life expectancy of the two genders is least in regions where women have poor access to health services.[1],[3]

In fact, it has been observed that in developing nations, 1 out of every 41 women dies owing to a maternal cause, which is predominantly because of the lack of services and shortage of trained health personnel.[1] The findings of a recently released report by the World Health Organization indicated that in most of the circumstances in which both men and women are suffering from similar diseases, the rate of access to health care among men is definitely less.[1] Such trends have been observed in diseases such as HIV and tuberculosis, and the rates of utilizing diagnostic tests or accessing therapy have been less among men.[1] In terms of cause of deaths, it has been identified that men are more prone to die because of lifestyle diseases and road traffic accidents, both of which are quite preventable.[1],[2],[3],[4],[5]

Acknowledging the fact that we all aim to attain universal health coverage, it is the need of the hour to strengthen the primary health care and improve its accessibility, affordability, and effectiveness to ensure that a large proportion of people, irrespective of their gender, can utilize the available services.[2],[4],[5] It is high time that steps are being taken to address the modifiable risk factors to enable better quality of life and in turn better life expectancy.[2],[4]

In conclusion, the available estimates pertaining to current global trends of life expectancy are quite encouraging; nevertheless, the attitude of the people toward accessing health care, strengthening of the health-care delivery services, and containment of the potential predisposing factors needs to be prioritized, especially in low-income nations.

Financial support and sponsorship

Nil.

Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.



 
  References Top

1.
World Health Organization. Uneven Access to Health Services Drives Life Expectancy Gaps: World Health Organization; 2019. Available from: https://www.who.int/news-room/detail/04-04-2019-uneven-access-to-health-services-drives- life-expectancy-gaps-who. [Last accessed on 2019 Apr 06]  Back to cited text no. 1
    
2.
GBD 2017 Mortality Collaborators. Global, regional, and national age-sex-specific mortality and life expectancy, 1950-2017: A systematic analysis for the global burden of disease study 2017. Lancet 2018;392:1684-735.  Back to cited text no. 2
    
3.
GBD 2016 Healthcare Access and Quality Collaborators. Measuring performance on the healthcare access and quality index for 195 countries and territories and selected subnational locations: A systematic analysis from the global burden of disease study 2016. Lancet 2018;391:2236-71.  Back to cited text no. 3
    
4.
Jo MW, Seo W, Lim SY, Ock M. The trends in health life expectancy in Korea according to age, gender, education level, and subregion: Using quality-adjusted life expectancy method. J Korean Med Sci 2019;34:e88.  Back to cited text no. 4
    
5.
GBD 2015 Healthcare Access and Quality Collaborators. Electronic address: cjlm@uw.edu, GBD 2015 Healthcare Access and Quality Collaborators. Healthcare access and quality index based on mortality from causes amenable to personal health care in 195 countries and territories, 1990-2015: A novel analysis from the global burden of disease study 2015. Lancet 2017;390:231-66.  Back to cited text no. 5
    




 

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