“The Alliance for Health Promotion and the World Health Organization hold Successful Global Forum on Universal Health Coverage”

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Geneva,18 November 2019

On November 12th 2019, the Alliance for Health Promotion organised the 9th Global Forum on Health Promotion in partnership with the World Health Organization. This year’s forum took a particular significance in light of the High-Level Meeting that led to the first ever UN political declaration on Universal Health Coverage. The Global Forum provided the earliest opportunity  to connect influential actors in the field of health across the globe, from representatives of governments, civil society actors academia and international organisations.

With half of the world population still lacking access to essential health services, Universal Health Coverage needs to become a priority if Sustainable Development Goal 3 on health Is to be achieved by 2030. In the UN High-Level Meeting, governments committed to act so that all people and communities will be able to access and use all the health services they need without being exposed to financial hardship.

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The emphasis of the UN Declaration on the involvement of all stakeholders and on the importance of health promotion as a tool to achieve Universal Health Coverage made the 9th Global Forum particularly critical and relevant. It enabled a much-needed discussion on how different stakeholders can put the declaration into practice. The President of the Alliance, Bernard Kadasia opened the forum with a call for action and by stressing the importance of multi-sectoral approaches including all stakeholders in order to tackle UHC. The WHO Assistant Director-General Dr Naoko Yamamoto further underlined the similarities and reinforcements between WHO’s and the Alliance’s missions..  This opening set the tone for discussions between civil society members, government representatives and international organisations. In the first panel, government representatives from Georgia, Germany, Sweden and several others repeated their commitment to Universal Health Coverage and laid out a road-map for future action. The panel’s moderator, Dr Mihály Kökény, emphasized the role of health promotion in achieving UHC as well as SDG goal 3 on Health. The second panel, moderated by Dr Hussein Elsangak, gave a voice to civil society organisations and helped further translate the declaration into actions. Experts from around the world shared how their organisations are working towards UHC, from mobilizing youth to using technologies to maximize the impact of health programmes. Finally, Zsuzsanna Jakab, Deputy Director-General of the WHO, delivered the keynote speech and shared her vision on how the WHO will coordinate global efforts on Universal Health Coverage. She outlined WHO strategy to shift away from a focus on curing diseases, towards a focus on preventive approaches, which recognising the importance of health promotion.

With health experts from around the globe, and more than 100 participants, the 9th Global Forum for Health Promotion was a great success, enabling key stakeholders to share and discuss their visions on how to implement global declarations.

The Global Forum’s organizer, the Alliance for Health Promotion, is a Geneva-based civil society organisation that seeks to participate in and shape health promotion discourses by providing a platform for dialogue and collaborations between IGOs, NGOs, health practitioners, policy-makers, educational institutions and students’ associations from across the world.

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To watch the video recording of the event, visit the following link:https://www.who.int

For updates about upcoming events of the Alliance,

Write to us at: secretariat@alliance4healthpromotion.org
Follow us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Alliance4HealthPromotion/
Follow us on Twitter: https://twitter.com/a4hp_geneva

Full texts for two of the speeches are also available:
For Rüdiger KRECH, Director of Health Promotion here: https://bit.ly/2OmMPs3
Full keynote speech by Deputy Director General of the WHO, Zsuzsanna JAKAB: https://bit.ly/2CPSEsT

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Programme 9GFHP 

The Alliance is proud to announce that our Vice-President Professor Elizabeth Cherian-Paramesh has been elected president of the Rotary Club of Bangalore

Press Release on Pre-WHA Lunchtime Seminar 

Geneva, Switzerland, 18th May 2019 –

The Alliance for Health Promotion in collaboration with the World Health Organisation and the Global Health Centre of the Graduate Institute organised a Pre-WHA Lunchtime Seminar titled ‘Achieving Healthier Populations Through Alliances With Civil Society’. The seminar took place at The Graduate Institute from 12:30 to 14:30 on 18th May, 2019.

The event saw the participation of some of the most influential actors in the field of health in International Geneva and other parts of the world. WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom graced the event with his presence and delivered the closing speech. The Assistant Director-General of the newly formed ‘Healthier Populations’ division, Dr Naoko Yamamoto delivered a technical presentation on the restructuring of the WHO and the renewed prioritisation of the health community on health promotion. Her technical presentation set the stage for further engagement with the event’s theme through a panel discussion which was moderated by Dr Mihály Kökény, a senior fellow of the Global Health Centre at The Graduate Institute.

The panelists for the discussion represented a wide range of global health actors from different regions and organisations; most importantly, the panel was not only gender-sensitive but also included a diversity in age. Loyce Pace from the Global Health Council highlighted the need for meaningful engagement with civil society. Elizabeth Cherian Paramesh brought in a range of examples from India, where NGOs have played a key role in health promotion, especially during the aftermath of natural disasters. The youngest panelist was Daniel Semmy from International Pharmaceutical Students Federation who was able to bring in the youth’s perspective on promoting health. The Secretary of Sri Lanka, Lakshmi Somatunga from the Ministry of Health, Nutrition and Indigenous Medicine shared the cultural history of Sri Lanka where communities have played an integral role strengthening health systems. Dr Svetlana Akselrod, the WHO Director UNIATF and GCM Secretariat emphasized on the need for civil society’s engagement in order to achieve the global goals of universal health coverage, protection from health emergencies and healthy living.

The panel discussion was followed by a stimulating round of audience participation in the form of comments. Having witnessed the presentations, Dr Tedros delivered the closing speech by addressing some of the points raised during the discussions.

He reiterated the new priorities of the WHO and their efforts to change the discourse around global health. He recognised the need for partnerships with civil society organisations and the mutual benefits that can arise out of such alliances. He made it clear that there was real transformation taking place within the WHO, to make it play its rightful role in achieving the goal to ensure healthy lives and promote well-being. He confirmed that the 3 billion goal of WHO can only be achieved with civil society’s participation.

In the end, Mr Bernard Kadasia, President of the Alliance expressed his gratitude to the participants for making the Pre-WHA lunchtime seminar a catalyst in opening the doors to wider discussions on the role of civil society in bridging the gap between global declarations and local realities. He also thanked Dr Tedros for making time out to attend the event despite his hectic schedule before the commencement of the 72nd World Health Assembly.

Find the pictures here

The Alliance for Health Promotion is a Geneva-based civil society organisation that seeks to participate in and shape health promotion discourses by providing a platform for dialogue and collaborations between IGOs, NGOs, health practitioners, policy-makers, educational institutions and student associations from across the world.

For updates about upcoming events of the Alliance,

Write to us at: secretariat@alliance4healthpromotion.org

Follow us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Alliance4HealthPromotion/

Follow us on Twitter: https://twitter.com/a4hp_geneva

Saturday 18 May 2019  09:00-17:00 IPSF Workshop for 35 Pharmaceutical Students hosted by Geneva University

Sunday 19 May 2019 09:45-13:00 WHO “Walk the Talk” – The Health for All Challenge Registration for the mini Marathon already open

Monday 20 May 2019 09:00-18:30 Opening day of the World Health Assembly in the UN Palais 

                                              15:00-17:30  Annual information session on WHA

Tuesday 21 May 2019 18:30-19:00 Annual Briefing of the Alliance, a Side event at the WHA

Monday 11 Nov 2019 15:00-17:00 Annual General Meeting 

Tuesday 12 Nov 2019 09:00-16:00 9th Global Forum on Health Promotion