Paul Farmer on The Colbert Report

I have long been a contributor to Partners in Health, the group founded by Paul Farmer that takes high quality health care to areas of great need around the world. It began when I read the book Mountains Beyond Mountains: The quest of Dr. Paul Farmer, a man who would cure the world by Tracy Kidder that I wrote about here back in 2005, and listened to a talk by Farmer around the same time when he visited my university.

I was impressed by the fact that he did not see global health as just a medical issue but one whose problems were tied closely to the capitalistic system, that inequalities exacerbated it, and that US policies in Haiti and its long standing support for the odious and ruthless Duvalier dictators were a major contributor to the appalling health conditions there.

Farmer came to talk with Stephen Colbert about what his group is currently doing.

(This clip aired on December 4, 2014. To get suggestions on how to view clips of The Daily Show and The Colbert Report outside the US, please see this earlier post. If the videos autoplay, please see here for a diagnosis and possible solutions.)


  1. doublereed says

    I remember an interview with Bill Gates that asked why his foundation focuses on one thing as opposed to another thing. And it was interesting because he basically said that health, gender equality, economic stability, and education end up being very tightly related. Focusing on any one of those tends to matter a lot for all the others, so you can get surprisingly rapid progress.

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