Investing in Health Systems Strengthening for Universal Health...
The High-Level Commission on Health Employment and Economic Growth’s recent report ‘Working for Health and Growth: Investing in the Health Workforce’ finds that investments in the health workforce generates dividends across the SDG agenda, not only for health, but also for global security, education, gender equality, decent jobs and inclusive economic growth.
The Commission was co-chaired by President Hollande of France and President Zuma of South Africa; and vice-chaired by the Director-Generals of the WHO and the International Labour Organization and the Secretary-General of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.
Strong reference to UHC 2030
The Commission has made strong reference to the International Health Partnership for UHC 2030, finding synergy and emphasizing the importance of its principles for effective action.
Its recommendation on partnerships and cooperation proposes to: “Promote intersectoral collaboration at national, regional and international levels; engage civil society, unions and other health workers’ organizations and the private sector; and align international cooperation to support investments in the health workforce, as part of national health and education strategies and plans”.
The Commission has strengthened inter-agency collaboration and requests that WHO, ILO, OECD and other stakeholders further intensify intersectoral action towards implementing its recommendations.
The report also states: “The Commission believes that the role of official development assistance has great potential to help operationalize the SDG vision and fully supports existing work to improve national accountability, institutional strength, fiduciary arrangements and donor coordination and alignment with national priorities (e.g. the Paris Declaration on Aid Effectiveness, the Accra Agenda for Action, the International Health Partnership (IHP+), the Busan Partnership for Effective Development Cooperation and the Global Partnership for Effective Development Co-operation).”
The final report of the expert group to the High-Level Commission on Health Employment and Economic Growth further reinforced these messages:
“Respectful, compassionate and effective health care can only be delivered within a system that supports such care. We are especially hopeful about linking the work of this Commission to UHC 2030, a new initiative that focuses on universal health coverage.”
The overall aim of UHC 2030 is to trigger and support a movement for accelerated, equitable and sustainable progress towards universal health coverage (SDG 3.8).
Its elements - derived from IHP+ - include a platform to coordinate health system strengthening across countries, consolidation of political momentum for universal health coverage, implementation of accountability for progress towards these objectives, and sharing knowledge to learn lessons.
The September 2016 launch of UHC 2030 and the Commission report has created virtuous synergies to concretely amplify effective action towards achieving the Sustainable Development Agenda. The UHC 2030 meeting on 12-13 December 2016 in Geneva, Switzerland, will be immediately followed by a High-Level Summit on 14-15 December 2016 to agree on a five-year implementation plan for the recommendations of the Commission.
These proposals are entirely aligned with the 2016 G7 Ise-Shima vision for global health.