Key Asks from the UHC Movement UN High-Level Meeting on Universal Health Coverage

3 April, 2019

Dear All,

I would like to share with you two important references on UHC

Key Asks from the UHC Movement UN High-Level Meeting on Universal Health Coverage


Ensure Political Leadership Beyond Health – Commit to achieve UHC for healthy lives and wellbeing for all at all stages, as a social contract. Health is the foundation for people, communities and economies to reach their full potential. Universal health coverage (UHC) is primarily the responsibility of governments, which ensure people’s health as a social contract. Achieving UHC is essential for inclusive development, prosperity and fairness, and requires political decisions that go beyond the health sector.


Leave No One Behind – Pursue equity in access to quality health services with financial protection. Health is enshrined as one of the fundamental rights of every human being. UHC is key to reducing poverty and promoting equity and social cohesion. Governments should invest in everyone’s health. Extension of geographical coverage and reaching the most marginalised and hard-to-reach populations are essential to achieving positive health outcomes. A strong system for monitoring and evaluation is needed to ensure accountability and participation.


Regulate and Legislate – Create a strong, enabling regulatory and legal environment responsive to people’s needs. UHC requires a sound legal and regulatory framework and institutional capacity to ensure the rights of people and meet their needs. Governments are the primary duty bearer under the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, even in cases when they rely on private providers.


Uphold Quality of Care – Build quality health systems that people and communities trust. Quality primary health care (PHC) is the backbone of UHC and creates trust in public institutions. Expansion of health coverage must be accompanied by investments in the quality of health services. People should be able to access a full spectrum of safe, quality services and products in their community, delivered by well-trained, well-paid, culturally and gender-sensitive health workers.


Invest More, Invest Better – Sustain public financing and harmonise health investments. Current funding levels are insufficient to achieve UHC by 2030. Governments need to increase domestic investment and allocate more public financing for health through equitable and mandatory resources. Governments must improve efficiency and equity in the use of existing resources and reduce reliance on impoverishing out-of-pocket payments. Development assistance to health should reduce fragmentation and strengthen national health financing capacities.


Move Together – Establish multi-stakeholder mechanisms for engaging the whole of society for a healthier world. All countries must take active steps to meaningfully engage non-governmental actors - particularly from unserved, underserved or poorly-served populations - in shaping the UHC agenda. Solutions for each country must be tailored to context and population needs. The international community and global health partners should unite to support countries to build a healthier world.

UHC key asks references

All my best regards.

Isabelle Wachsmuth

Universal Health Coverage and Health Systems

World Health Organization

Geneva, Switzerland

Office: +41 (0)22 791 3175


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HIFA profile: Isabelle Wachsmuth-Huguet, MSc, MPH has been working for World Health Organization (WHO) since 2003 and has 20 years of expertise on international network promoting and implementing knowledge management solutions in both high and low income countries. She is currently Project manager, Health Systems and Innovation Cluster, Service Delivery & Safety (SDS), Emerging Issues, Quality Universal Health Coverage (QUHC), at WHO Geneva. She is also the coordinator and lead moderator of the WHO Global Francophone Forum - Health Information For All (HIFA-Fr: She is a member of the HIFA working group on Multilingualism.

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