The Malaysian Health Coalition urges all eligible Malaysian citizens to vote in the General Elections on 19 November 2022 and fulfil our constitutional duty.
Voting is important because democracies are good for your health. To prove this, we can look at the Liberal Democracy Index, which is maintained by the University of Gothenburg in Sweden. The higher the index, the more democratic the country is. In 2019, countries with an index of >0.7 had life expectancy of >70 years, while countries with an index of <0.5 had life expectancy of <60 years.
There are many possible reasons why people live longer if they live in democracies.
One, smart voters will demand higher quality politicians and better public service in return for their votes. Two, democracies usually have a strong civil service and high accountability. And three, democracies are usually richer, allowing them to spend more on health care.
Health care means the care that you receive in hospitals and clinics when you’re sick, with doctors and nurses delivering medicines and surgeries.
After three years of Covid, we know that health care alone is not enough to improve our health, because our health depends on many non-health care factors like labour rights, social welfare protections, good nutrition, safe homes, early childhood education, and gender rights.
In total, these are called “social determinants of health”. And democracies are better at promoting the social determinants of health as well, especially if we have smart and capable political leaders supported by an accountable civil service.
Democracies are good for health in many complex and inter-linked ways. Therefore, the Malaysian Health Coalition urges all eligible Malaysian citizens to vote for the best possible candidates on November 19.
Our health depends on your vote.
- This is the personal opinion of the writer or publication and does not necessarily represent the views of CodeBlue.