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Ethics in Biology, Engineering and Medicine: An International Journal
SJR: 0.123

ISSN Print: 2151-805X
ISSN Online: 2151-8068

Ethics in Biology, Engineering and Medicine: An International Journal

DOI: 10.1615/EthicsBiologyEngMed.2012005472
pages 353-364

Health Care in the Developing World: Embracing a New Definition of Technology to Include Biomaterials

Olumurejiwa A. Fatunde
School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA
Sujata K. Bhatia
School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA 02138

ABSTRACT

The focus in the international health community has shifted over the past century from eradicating infectious diseases to strengthening primary health care, and an important component of primary health care in today's hospitals is the use of technology. However, the developing world is significantly disadvantaged in this regard. Upon consideration of the major categories of health care technology and the conditions under which they fail in the developing world, it becomes clear that the criteria for appropriateness of technology are inherently different in the developing world versus the developed world. Under a broader, more inclusive definition of technology, biomaterials represent one opportunity for the developing world to contribute to the growing canon of healthcare technology. Biomaterials can empower developing countries to leverage their own agricultural capabilities to contribute to novel medical technologies.


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