Banking for health: the role of financial sector actors in investing in global health

Krech, RĂ¼diger collab. ; Kickbusch, Ilona collab. ; Franz, Christian collab. ; Wells, Nadya collab.

The world faces multiple health financing challenges as the global health burden evolves. Countries have set an ambitious health policy agenda for the next 15 years with prioritisation of universal health coverage under the Sustainable Development Goals. The scale of investment needed for equitable access to health services means global health is one of the key economic opportunities for decades to come. New financing partnerships with the private sector are vital. The aim of this study is to unlock additional financing sources, acknowledging the imperative to link financial returns to the providers of capital, and create profitable, sustainable financing structures. This paper outlines the global health investment opportunity exploring intersections of financial and health sector interests, and the role investment in health can play in economic development. Considering increasing demand for impact investments, the paper explores responsible financing initiatives and expansion of the global movement for sustainable capital markets. Adding an explicit health component (H) to the Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) investment criteria, creating the ESG+H initiative, could serve as catalyst for the inclusion of health criteria into mainstream financial actors' business practices and investment objectives. The conclusion finds that health considerations directly impact profitability of the firm and therefore should be incorporated into financial analysis. Positive assessment of health impact, at a broad societal or environmental level, as well as for a firm's employees can become a value enhancing competitive advantage. An ESG+H framework could incorporate this into mainstream financial decision-making and into scalable investment products.

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In: BMJ Global Health. - Vol. 3(2018), Suppl. 1, p. 1-9
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 Record created 2018-05-08, last modified 2018-05-08

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