“East Asia is again experiencing an escalation of seemingly intractable conflicts over territory and history that threaten to undo gains that have been made in building regional institutions and promoting cross-border engagement. We need another watershed moment of cooperation at the people-to-people level to help open up new avenues of communication across countries in the region.
Health is a field that is ripe for that kind of cooperation. As anyone who has done any work in health policy knows, it is a far cry from being a ‘nonpolitical’ field. But health is one area of our lives that is truly universal: every single one of us faces challenges to our health at some point in our lives. Having more resources can protect many of us from the devastating effects of some of those challenges, but it does not offer full protection. And health, unlike other issues that dominate the headlines in the region these days, is not a zero-sum game.”
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