6 June 2023

UHC is essential for the 2030 Agenda as a whole

UHC2030 Co-chair Statement on the SDG Summit Zero Draft Political Declaration

Heads of State and Government will gather on September 18-19, 2023 at the United Nations Headquarters in New York for the SDG Summit to follow-up and review the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), including SDG3 on health. The SDG Summit will take place directly preceding the three UN High-level meetings on pandemic prevention, preparedness and response, universal health coverage, and tuberculosis, which take place on September 20-22.

As stakeholders meet on June 7, 2023 for a virtual Informal Stakeholder Dialogue to share inputs to the Zero Draft Political Declaration for the SDG Summit, we welcome the Zero Draft of the SDG Summit Political Declaration and its vision for a world where everyone, everywhere has access to the health care they need, where all people can go to school, and where no one goes hungry. The past few years, and the world’s experience with the COVID-19 pandemic, have made it abundantly clear that healthy societies are a precondition for sustainable development as a whole. We fully support the call to leave no one behind by focusing policies and actions on the poorest and most vulnerable, with a particular emphasis on women and girls, and to take action to combat inequalities within and between countries, including through universal health coverage (UHC).

To ensure that the Political Declaration on Sustainable Development is well-aligned with the other three health-related Political Declarations, we urge member states and other stakeholders to:

  • Recognize that UHC provides an umbrella for all health issues, and all populations, in all countries, and is essential for poverty reduction and the 2030 Agenda as a whole.
  • Strengthen integrated approaches to pandemic preparedness, prevention and response and universal health coverage by building equitable, resilient health systems.
  • Realize a vision of a world with access to inclusive and equitable universal health coverage and equitable access to quality health care without financial hardship.
  • Leave no one behind by focusing policies and actions on the poorest and most vulnerable, including women and girls, and by removing the barriers of various types of discrimination from health policy frameworks and achieving universal health coverage.
  • Commit to establish multi-stakeholder partnerships and institutionalize formal mechanisms for inclusive governance and social participation as the best way to ensure public policies, particularly in the health sector, best respond to the needs of communities and strengthen people’s trust in government actions.

We call on Member States to ensure they fully leverage the transformative power of UHC for the SDGs. UHC is essential to ensure a healthier, safer and fairer world. 

UHC2030 Steering Committee Co-chairs Gabriela Cuevas and Justin Koonin

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