2019•09•27 New York
Children playing in Phnom Penh. UN Photo by Kibae Park. Creative Commons BY-NC 2.0
The first high-level meeting on universal health coverage (UHC) during the UN General Assemby (September 2019) adopted the UN Political Declaration on Universal Health Coverage to mobilise the global community, and secure political commitment from Heads of State and Government to accelerate progress toward achieving UHC by 2030 (1).
The declaration contains a broad scope of global and public health issues such as health systems, financing, emergencies, health workers, gender, children, aging, migrants and refugees, discrimination and violence, communicable and non-communicable diseases, digital health and data, access to health technologies, and partnerships. It also includes detailed topics, such as eye and oral care, mental health, sanitation, safety, healthy diets, and neglected diseases (2).
In adopting the declaration, UN Member States have committed to advance towards UHC by investing in four major areas around primary health care:
1. Mechanisms to ensure no one suffers financial hardship due to high out-of-pocket costs for healthcare
2. High-impact health interventions to combat diseases and protect women’s and children’s health
3. Strengthen health workforce and infrastructure
4. Reinforce governance capacity.
As a follow-up, 12 multilateral organizations (3), which collectively channel one third of development assistance for health, launched their Global Action Plan for health and wellbeing for all. The plan aims to ensure that the orgnanizations provide more streamlined support to countries to help deliver UHC and achieve the health-related SDG targets (4).
Member States will report back on their progress on UHC to the UN General Assembly in 2023 (5).
1 https://www.un.org/pga/73/event/universal-health-coverage/. Accessed 24 September 2019.
2 https://www.un.org/pga/73/wp-content/uploads/sites/53/2019/09/UHC-HLM-silence-procedure.pdf, Accessed 24 September 2019.
3 Gavi, the GFF, the Global Fund, UNAIDS, UNDP, UNFPA, UNICEF, UNITAID, UN Women, World Bank Group, WFP and WHO.
4 https://www.who.int/news-room/detail/24-09-2019-multilateral-agencies-launch-a-joint-plan-to-boost-global-health-goals, Accessed 25 September 2019.
5 https://www.who.int/news-room/detail/23-09-2019-who-welcomes-landmark-un-declaration-on-universal-health-coverage, Accessed 24 September 2019.
Downloadable copy of the summary note can be found here: UHC Sept 2019 UPDATE