It should come as no surprise that the health care systems of the United States and India differ in many ways, but what may be surprising is the amount they have in common.

This fact—and what each country can learn from the other as it pursues improvements in health care—was the subject of a talk at Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH) on Thursday, December 6, 2012, featuring Ashish Jha, associate professor of health policy at HSPH and a practicing physician, and K. Sujatha Rao. Rao is a former secretary of health and human welfare in India (2009-2010) and director-general of the National AIDS Control Organization (2006-2009). After finishing her official career with the Indian Administrative Service two years ago, Rao spent three months at HSPH in spring 2012 as a senior leadership fellow in the Division of Policy Translation and Leadership.

“It’s striking to me how similar these two countries’ health care systems are—the two largest democracies in the world—and how different their health care systems are,” Jha told the audience in Kresge 110.

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