Renowned physcian, global health care activist Paul Farmer dies at 62

World-renowned physician and medi­cal anthropologist Paul Farmer died of an acute cardiac event in his sleep on February 21. He was 62.

Farmer, who is credited with helping to improve health-care equity around the globe, was deeply influenced by his Catholic faith and by liberation theology in particular. He maintained a close friendship with Gustavo Gutiérrez, the Peruvian Catholic priest credited with creating liberation theology, and carried a “preferential option for the poor”—a core liberation theology concept—into all of his work, even at secular institutions.

In a 1995 essay for America magazine, Farmer wrote that liberation theology provides both a challenge and an insight for medical professionals.