When Obama came out with his Healthcare plan, did you read it? Ira Magaziner did. He was the first attempted architect of a national healthcare plan and after the efforts and failures of six presidents; he is encouraged to see that one finally succeeded. He doesn't think it's perfect, but he thinks it's a start.
Why should we care what Ira thinks? Well, he has been one of the chief architects of the Clinton and Gates Foundations' efforts to eradicate HIV and AIDS around the globe, he has intricate knowledge of Washington and our Healthcare System, and he has a vested interest in making things better.
Through his work with the Clinton Foundation, Magaziner has created partnerships between natural adversaries and brought donors, manufacturers, governments and patients to the same side of the argument. He has helped develop healthcare infrastructure in developing countries and he has dramatically reduced the cost of vaccines, treatments and diagnostic tests.
"We organized the buyers together and worked with suppliers to lower the total systems cost of producing and delivering the drugs. This way the companies can still make money but the overall cost comes down," said Magaziner.
His solution to the capital-intensive drug and vaccine industries was to change the supply chain. Make it cheaper to produce the drug, develop the infrastructure on the ground so that it's cheaper to distribute the drug, and then train local doctors so that it's cheaper to administer the drug.
Since the inception of its global HIV/AIDS initiative, the Clinton Foundation has brought the cost of HIV and AIDS drugs from $600 per treatment to below $100. Diagnostic tests that were approximately $30 per test now cost just above $1. The organization's efforts have spread to 35 countries and their current focus is on making new technologies available to developing countries at a faster rate.
The current lag time between when treatments become available in the US and Europe, and when they first reach the developing world, is five years. Magaziner wants to dissolve that lapse and make the rollout simultaneous.
He believes this is possible in the near future. Do you?
This article available online at: