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The Boston Globe

Business

Economist explores the roots of global health

Marcella Alsan always knew she wanted to be a doctor when she grew up. Being an economist at the same time was not part of the plan.

But during medical school, Alsan worked at a public hospital in Quito, Ecuador, an institution so poor that doctors had to send patients to the pharmacy down the street to buy their own bandages and syringes. One day, a 9-year-old girl hit by a bus was brought to the hospital, and Alsan, who didn’t have the equipment for a blood transfusion, was unable to save her.

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