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Innovative Financing for Global Surgery

The Catalytic Role of Impact Investment

5 billion people around the world lack access to safe, timely, and affordable surgical care. Surgical conditions represent nearly one-third of the global burden of disease and are a leading cause of death and disability worldwide. Without investment in strengthening surgical systems, the global economy faces a projected cumulative loss of $20.7 trillion in GDP by 2030. Improving access to safe surgical care is a cost-effective, cross-cutting public health service that is critical for strengthening health systems, workforces, and health security

October 2020




Inadequate financing poses a major constraint to the provision of quality care in LMIC’s, and new strategies are needed to expand the fiscal space for health and ensure the scale-up of surgical services. The increasing focus on sustainable investing globally presents a valuable opportunity to expand the fiscal space for health.  


There are currently USD$23.5 trillion in assets under management by UN PRI Signatories, presenting a valuable opportunity to help close the SDG financing gap. Innovative financing structures present a channel that enable the flow of these capital pools and build on the existing momentum.


Our panellists will provide insights on the obstacles and opportunities these innovative partnerships in financing healthcare have in ensuring access to universal healthcare. Scroll over their images to learn more. 



Marketing Executive

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Shanthakumar is the Managing Partner of Global Impact Partners, an Impact Investment Advisory firm working with asset owners managing USD$100bn+. Shanthakumar led the development of the Global Health Impact Partnership, a platform to invest $1bn into healthcare outcomes based financing towards delivering healthcare for all. Shanthakumar was  a co-author of the Global Steering Group on Impact Investment’s paper on widening and deepening the global impact investment market.  He has also previously worked in corporate law at Herbert Smith Freehills, the UN ECOSOC. 

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Marketing Executive

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Caitlin Medley is a Portfolio Manager – Thematic & Impact Investing with QBE Group Investments, part of QBE Insurance Group, principally focussed on QBE’s impact investment Premiums4Good initiative, QBE’s commitment to social impact bonds, Pay-for-success (PFS) and results-based financing, and a growing focus on impact in the global portfolio across multiple impact sectors.QBE is an active institutional investor in Social impact bonds and PFS, having invested in 9 SIBs across the global portfolio and cornerstoned the first of its kind SIB fund in the US in 2017. Caitlin is also Co-chair of Impact Management & Measurement Community of Practice (COP) within Responsible Investment Association Australasia, established to facilitate the sharing of leading practice knowledge and resources for impact management and measurement. 

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Marketing Executive

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Varun Jhaveri is currently deputed as an Officer on Special Duty at the National Health Authority (NHA), Government of India. He leads the innovation strategy and focuses on supply side strengthening at the NHA. Within the innovation strategy, Varun leads the Market Access Programme – a Government of India’s initiative for supporting healthcare innovations. Earlier, he has worked with the Asian Development Bank, United Nations, NITI Aayog and University of Chicago. Formerly, he has advised  the Government of Karnataka on setting up Arogya Karnataka - India’s first Universal Health coverage scheme. In 2019, Varun was selected as one of the SDG Goalkeepers by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation

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Marketing Executive

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Dr. Dash is an Associate Professor and preventive cardiologist at Stanford Medical School. In 2014, Dr. Dash launched the nation’s first cardiology clinic for preventing heart disease in South Asians, where he has innovated in the preventive care delivery space, reducing average cardiovascular risk by 37% in 6 months. He then founded HealthPals, a precision prevention company that automatically identifies high risk patients and surfaces the right treatments at the right time for every individual. HealthPals is improving the quality of healthcare for the underserved in developing global health systems through impact investment

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Marketing Executive

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Marissa is the Health Program Director at the UBS Optimus Foundation, which connects UBS Financial Services clients with inspiring entrepreneurs, new technologies and proven models that are making a measurable, long-term difference to the most serious and enduring social and environmental problems. In her role, Marissa rigorously selects and actively supports a portfolio of programs to address issues that prevent children from surviving and thriving. Marissa is also the former Innovation Team Lead for the Center for Accelerating Innovation and Impact at USAID. In this role she worked to source innovations to solve some of the toughest global health challenges, from poor maternal and newborn health outcomes, to the spread of infectious diseases like Ebola and Zika.

Marketing Executive


Dr Meara is the Kletjian Professor of Global Surgery, Director of the Program in Global Surgery and Social Change, and Professor of Surgery in the Department of Surgery at Harvard Medical School. Dr. Meara serves as the Plastic Surgeon-in-Chief of the Department of Plastic & Oral Surgery at Boston Children's Hospital. He was Co-Chair for the Lancet Commission on Global Surgery and was a commissioner on the Lancet Global Health Commission on High Quality Health Systems in the SDG Era and the Lancet Oncology Commission. In 2008 he created the Paul Farmer Global Surgery Fellowship program. He is also interested in value-based health care and implementation science research, including time driven activity-based cost research and outcomes research.

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