WHO announces guide to support countries to develop primary health care

Astana, Oct 13 (EFE).- World Health Organization Director General Dr. Tedros Ghebreyesus announced in Astana on Monday the publication of a guide to support countries to adopt primary health care.

Speaking at a WHO international conference to mark the 45th anniversary of Alma-Ata and the 5th anniversary of Astana declarations, Dr. Tedros said “the primer presents evidence reviews on the implementation of the primary health care approach from over 50 countries, in all regions and at all income levels.”

The conference was inaugurated by Kazakh President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev who said in his speech that estimates show that “an effective primary health care system could potentially save 60 million lives and increase life expectancy by three years and seven months by 2030.”

The Kazakh leader proposed with the support of WHO the creation of a coalition of countries to work together.

Tokayev said the coalition’s aim should be “to promote the principles of prevention and health care, and develop joint recommendations for the development of primary health care.”

Dr. Tedros also talked about the levers to implement primary health care: political commitment, governance, financing, and engagement.

“Supporting countries to make these strategic and operational shifts is a key priority,” the head of WHO said.

Both Alma-Ata and Astana declarations helped outline the critical role of primary health care around the world to save lives and improve life expectancy.

Signed in 1978, the Alma-Ata Declaration was key for countries to provide health care for their citizens as a fundamental human right, reduce inequality, and allow people to participate individually and collectively, based on practical, scientifically sound, and socially acceptable methods and technology.

The Astana Declaration, presented in 2018, renewed political commitment to primary health care, emphasizing its role in improving people’s lives.

The conference was held on the eve of the 73rd session of the WHO Regional Committee for Europe, which is to continue until Thursday.


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