Civil society in ASEAN

The Lancet
Mar 05, 2011 Volume 377  Number 9768  Pages 783 – 874

Civil society in ASEAN: a healthy development?
Andrew Wells-Dang, Giang Wells-Dang

Across southeast Asia, local citizens engage in collective action for health, the basis of networks of trust that are often overlooked by state agencies and external observers. Informal groups and Buddhist monks provided first aid and food assistance to survivors after Myanmar’s cyclone Nargis in 2008, in the absence of governmental and external assistance.1,2 In Vietnam, support provided by local Buddhist and Catholic congregations, and organisations such as the Women’s Union, have expanded to fill the increase in demand for local health services as the previously subsidised state monopoly splintered into an uneven mixture of public and private health providers.