“A healthy attitude is contagious but don't wait to catch it from others. Be a carrier”

Tom Stoppard


Dear Friends,


When we are talking about healthcare in Central Asian countries, health disparities are generally not at the top of the agenda. The majority of research focuses on infectious and chronic diseases, while social issues surrounding health do not get the attention that they deserve. Indeed, if you do a search on “health disparities” in Central Asian countries, there is only a limited number of published articles in this area. But does it mean that health disparities are nonexistent in these countries? If we simply look at life expectancy in Kazakhstan, we find that the average life expectancy in Kazakhstan is 70.24 years, which holds the 111th place worldwide. However, if we look at males only, the life expectancy drops to 65.66 years, making Kazakhstan to occupy 123rd place worldwide. In contrast, we will find that Kazakhstani females have 74.74 years of life expectancy on average, which constitutes to 105th place for female life expectancy worldwide, representing one of the largest gender gaps around the world in life expectancy. Similarly, there is a huge gap in life expectancy between rural and urban populations. This simple evaluation of the data shows that there is a need to further evaluate the contribution of age, socio-economic status, race, and other factors on life expectancy in Central Asia. Our editorial group at the Central Asian Journal of Global Health strongly believes that problems of health inequality in Central Asian region deserve much needed spotlight and will gladly consider your contributions to this topic. 


            As in many cases in Central Asia, health disparities are masked by social desirability. This and other areas of concern are highlighted in recent article by Craig and Engstrom published in our journal, titled “Public Health and Social Desirability in Kazakhstan: Methodological Considerations”:

“…Participant reports regarding personal health behaviors and lifestyle did not reflect the national reports regarding lifestyle behaviors [in Astana – Ed.]. The relationship between powerful others subscale and tobacco smoking indicate that using healthcare providers may open up avenues to lowering tobacco use through patient education; however, social desirability is a notable concern for public health interventions. More importantly, the surveys uncovered future questions for conducting public health research with the general public, including issues of trust in the healthcare system and social desirability bias. Additional factors such as distrust in healthcare and government also may play a role in the public’s participation in social scientific research. The students who conducted the surveys reported a general skepticism from the public ranging from unfamiliarity with survey research to explicit distrust in the intentions and purpose of the research itself...”

What do you think about health disparities in your country? Please see the full text article and many others in the link below: http://cajgh.pitt.edu/ojs/index.php/cajgh/article/view/191

For more research on health issues in Central Asian and around the globe please visit the page of our journal (http://cajgh.pitt.edu/). Reading and publishing in our journal is absolutely free!


Please e-mail us on cajgh.news@gmail.com if you would like to become part of our newsletter. Your opinion matters!



Central Asian Journal of Global Health is a biannual journal aimed at everybody working in the fields of public health and medicine. Specifically, it aims to focus on the geographic region that is oftentimes not sufficiently highlighted by existing journals, Central Asian countries. In addition to research in Central Asia, the journal is opened to submissions from other countries.  It provides forum for discussion for all aspects of public health, medicine, and global health in Central Asia and around the world. We welcome contributions from established researchers, especially those working on cutting edge questions, but we are also keen to act as a supportive environment for new investigators and with those who never published in English language journals. 


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Best wishes,

Faina Linkov, PhD


Central Asian Journal of Global Health



Shalkar Adambekov, MSc

Central Asian Editorial Board,

Central Asian Journal of Global Health