Study finds UNICEF program in West Africa fails
...An analysis of the program in Benin, Ghana and Mali found children in areas where it wasn't in effect had a better chance of surviving past age 5 than children who were covered by it. The study was published online Tuesday in the British medical journal Lancet.It is interesting to note that areas that weren't "helped" by the UN health program did dramatically better than those that were.
It is one of the few studies to evaluate whether U.N. health programs really save lives. Related work published last year found that it wasn't clear what the world had gotten from U.N. initiatives that cost nearly $200 billion over the past two decades, and that some programs may have been counterproductive.
....In Benin, child deaths fell by 13 percent after the UNICEF program started. But in areas of Benin where the program wasn't used, the death rate dropped by nearly double: 25 percent.
....Little effort has gone into finding out if global health initiatives work, yet billions of dollars are poured into them every year.
....UNICEF should have made the grant money dependent on delivering results. "It's hardly surprising the program was a complete flop."
This study reminds me of all the tax dollars poured into education that show no benefit. As long as the funding goes to programs that focus on the wrong thing, it doesn't matter how much money is spent. This should also be a cautionary tale for both education and health care reform.
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