Health inequities: How can medical students tackle inequalities in health around the world?

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This article was exclusively written for The European Sting by Mr. MBONYINSHUTI Eruine, a second year medical student at university of Rwanda. He is affiliated with the International Federation of Medical Students Associations (IFMSA), cordial partner of The Sting. The opinions expressed in this piece belong strictly to the writers and do not necessarily reflect IFMSA’s view on the topic, nor The European Sting’s one.

Premature death is more than three times more likely to occur in those at the bottom income levels of society. Even middle-income level society are more than twice as likely to die earlier than top earners. A health inequality is any quantifiable characteristic of health that differs between people or among socially significant groups. Any moral evaluation of how reasonable or fair the discrepancies that are seen are absent from the definition of health inequality.

 Cross-sector Collaboration, strategy to reduce health inequalities through proactive measures is to go outside of the healthcare sector and cooperate with organizations in other industries on patient participation. Greater patient participation and investment in their health, regardless of their circumstances, is the result of working with partners committed to providing healthcare information and procedures for the general public as well as leveraging technology to promote better health. To do this, think about working with other public institutions like those in education, social services, and public health.

 Supporting better health, by encouraging improved health for everybody, we can lessen the likelihood of inequities. Healthcare reform can be expensive, but delaying these reforms may end up costing more in the long run.Giving patients the resources they need to maintain or improve their health is a vital aspect of patient assistance. Closing the health inequality gap can be greatly aided by the development of technologies and services that assist in managing the conditions that individuals live with.
Virtual Care, anyone who wants to access healthcare can gain from using digital technologies to help minimize health inequities.According to the NHS policy, enabling online booking, automatic dispensaries, patient interaction platforms, and virtual consultations will let patients to get care whenever it is most convenient for them.Those who might be unable to physically access appointments will particularly benefit from this. Patients are more engaged and health inequities are decreased when care is more readily available and more easily accessed.

 Patient education, patient engagement is among the method for reducing health disparities; another is raising public knowledge of health issues. Education spending enables patients to be more informed about their health and, thus, more invested in their treatment experience. Cross-sector collaboration is linked to patient education as well. More people will have the knowledge and access they need to take care of their health requirements and reduce inequality if health awareness and education are not simply the focus of health organizations but are widespread in society.

All facets of the health system must be included in intersectoral, interdisciplinary efforts that help reduce health inequities. In order to achieve proper universal health coverage with a system of comprehensive and high-quality care, it is crucial to keep developing interventions aimed at bolstering health systems.


Pauly, B.(., MacDonald, M., Hancock, T. et al. Reducing health inequities: the contribution of core public health services in BC. BMC Public Health 13, 550 (2013).


About the author

MBONYINSHUTI Eruine is a second year medical student at university of Rwanda. Eruine is a very dedicated and goal-oriented student with a passion for surgery and global advocacy. He is based in MEDSAR Rwanda and serves on the standing committee on public health. He wants to use creativity and research to change people’s lives.

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