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Rural Health System Resources


Economies of resistance


Michelle Peteriea, Alex Brooma, Katherine Kennya, Jennifer Broomb, David Regand, Lise Laffertyd, Angela Kelly-Hankud,e and Carla Treloarfa


The article looks at how economics drives health in modern societies. It argues that health problems are often blamed on the behaviour of people, the attitudes of communities or organisational decisions, overlooking how commercial decisions of health providers impact on community and individual health. The research uses a case study of market economics to demonstrate how commercial interests have negatively influenced the development of new antibiotics. They argue that “[h]ealthcare providers run as businesses beholden to budget bottom lines, and healthcare itself is transformed into a commodity (available to some but not necessarily to others). Equally, R&D is constrained by crude financial calculations that stall or prevent important work that might deliver considerable benefits to human health”.

Why is this useful for rural and remote people?

While this is an academic work, it is a useful analysis for rural, remote and Aboriginal people looking to understand how vested interest and the commercialisation of healthcare has reduced the focus on public good (health equity, health outcomes) as healthcare is driven by private gain (profits, prestige). This can be useful in working out as a community the types of service providers you want to work with, and whether they are primarily interested in your health and outcomes for your community.

Suggested Citation

Michelle Peterie, Alex Broom, Katherine Kenny, Jennifer Broom, David Regan, Lise Lafferty, Angela Kelly-Hanku & Carla Treloar (2023) Economies of resistance, Critical Public Health


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