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Global Health and Justice: Re-examining our Values


  • Solomon R. Benatar


This article is corrected by:

  1. Errata: Erratum Volume 27, Issue 7, 410, Article first published online: 5 August 2013

  • Conflict of interest statement: No conflicts declared

Address for correspondence: Prof. Solly Benatar, Bioethics, Room L51-67 ● Old Groote Schuur Hospital, Hospital Road ● Observatory 7925 ● Cape Town ● South Africa. T: 27 21 406 6696 F: 27 21 448 5653. Email:


Widening disparities in health within and between nations reflect a trajectory of ‘progress’ that has ‘run its course’ and needs to be significantly modified if progress is to be sustainable. Values and a value system that have enabled progress are now being distorted to the point where they undermine the future of global health by generating multiple crises that perpetuate injustice. Reliance on philanthropy for rectification, while necessary in the short and medium terms, is insufficient to address the challenge of economic and other systems spinning out of control. Innovative approaches are required and it is suggested that these could best emerge from in-depth multidisciplinary research supported by endeavours to promote a ‘global mind-set.’