Lesson Plan for Facing History and Ourselves: Paul Farmer and Jeffrey Sachs
Lesson Plan by Maggie Elmarakby
Global health is an area of medicine and public health which is continuously attracting more media attention. It appears that with incredible advancements in modern medicine, eradicating epidemics in disease-ridden populations is finally within reach. Doctor Paul Farmer, founder of Partners in Health and a professor at Harvard University, is a tireless advocate for the poor and the sick. He believes that it is possible to end the cycle of poverty and disease worldwide but warns that the “devil is in the details.”
Jeffrey Sachs is a renowned economist known for his work with developing nations. He is a former director of the United Nations Millennium Development Project. His expertise is in market-based causes for inequalities in healthcare. Both Farmer and Sachs have sharp critiques for the current way in which global healthcare functions.
Economics and Global Health
In this lesson plan, students will discover how varied approaches to global health—economics in the case of Jeffrey Sachs and medicine in the case of Paul Farmer—still reach some of the same conclusions about these public health challenges. Sachs and Farmer’s perspectives will also provide a forum for a conversation about the basic of global health, issues of poverty, and the myriad advocacy organizations working against poverty and disease.
1-3 class periods, plus optional extensions for research or activities.
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