In times of globalisation, Public Health cannot be dealt with on an exclusively national scale any more. The globalsiation process leads to new challenges for Germany and the neighbouring countries in Europe, which demand a wider perspective:
- Global injustice regarding health is strikingly demonstrated by the disparities in childhood mortality. The mortality of children under 5 years of age is even rising again in Africa today, since this region is economically marginalized by globalisation. The necessary preventive measures are simple and cost-effective, but despite numerous efforts their sustainable implementation has not succeeded so far.
- The spread of a “Western” life style is being fuelled by urbanisation, global markets and activities of trans-national corporations. As a consequence, tobacco use becoming more common in poorer countries. Due to changing lifestyles, the burden of chronic, non-contagious diseases is increasing, in addition to the unfinished agenda of infectious diseases and maternal and childhood mortality.
- Worldwide disparities in wealth and economic development, armed conflicts and natural disasters due to climate change cause people to flee or migrate. The increase of worldwide mobility influences the size, age and social structure of populations as well as the epidemiology of diseases (See also the section on migration ...more). This has direct consequences for national health systems. In addition, poorer countries often struggle with the emigration of qualified health personnel (so called "Brain Drain"). The worldwide lack of health workers sometimes even leads to targeted international recruitment on behalf of more affluent countries. Meanwhile, however, global political efforts to meet this problem are on the increase.