Publication Date:

01 Sep 2002


Povey G, Mercer MA. (2002) East Timor in transition: health & health care. Int J Health Serv. 2002;32(3):607-23.



East Timor was liberated from 400 years of conquest and exploitation in an armed struggle that ended, in September 1999, in a conflagration that destroyed its social and physical infrastructures. For two years the territory has been under United Nations administration. Political conditions remain unstable as the result of many intrinsic and external factors. Its economy continues to depend upon infusions of funds from multilateral, bilateral, and private sources. Efforts by expatriates to introduce Euro-American cultural and technical models have been applied to the factors that determine health, with modest results. East Timor expects to be totally independent of foreign control early in 2002. Its future health will depend upon continuing collaboration between international and local leadership in evolving effective government, economy, and health services designed, managed, and executed by Timorese.


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