Ranjan K Baruah
(With direct inputs from UN publication and feedback may be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org)
Universal Health Coverage Day - Theme
We know that health is our real wealth. Good health means a good mind which means a healthy society around us. Healthcare is important for each and every one of us. When it comes to health care for all then we hear about universal health coverage. It means that all people have access to the health services they need, when and where they need them, without financial hardship. It includes the full range of essential health services, from health promotion to prevention, treatment, rehabilitation, and palliative care.
World's Current Healthcare Facts
Currently, at least half of the people in the world do not receive the health services they need. About 100 million people are pushed into extreme poverty each year because of out-of-pocket spending on health. This must change. The situation is more challenging at the time of pandemic like COVID 19. Nearly one year after the first COVID-19 cases, we must say goodbye to the status quo that got us here, and settle for nothing less than strong health systems that Protect Everyone—now and into the future.
All governments promise good healthcare facilities to its citizens. We know that to make health for all a reality, we need: individuals and communities who have access to high quality health services so that they take care of their own health and the health of their families; skilled health workers providing quality, people-centred care; and policy-makers committed to investing in universal health coverage. It is important for all governments to have good health policies which shall benefit all citizens and there should not be any deprivation due to shortage of fund.
What is History About Universal Health Coverage(UHC)
On 12 December 2012, the United Nations General Assembly endorsed a resolution urging countries to accelerate progress toward universal health coverage (UHC) – the idea that everyone, everywhere should have access to quality, affordable healthcare - as an essential priority for international development. On 12 December 2017, the United Nations proclaimed 12 December as International Universal Health Coverage Day (UHC Day) by resolution 72/138.
United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres in his message said that "in responding to the pandemic, we have seen rapid innovative approaches to health service delivery and models of care, and advances in preparedness. We must learn from this experience. For Universal Health Coverage Day, let us commit to end this crisis and build a safer and healthier future by investing in health systems that protect us all — now."
The day aims to raise awareness of the need for strong and resilient health systems and universal health coverage with multi-stakeholder partners. 'Health for All: Protect Everyone' is the theme for this year. The goal of universal health coverage (UHC) has become more attainable as the world has become richer, leading to greater access to health services and technologies, such as vaccines and antibiotics, and to the most dramatic decline in poverty ever achieved.
There is no doubt that universal health coverage should be based on strong, people-centred primary health care. Countries which have invested more on health have seen progress in their own countries. Countries like India need to invest more on health apart from others. We are already aware that 2020 has been a long moment of reckoning for health systems around the world. While the harsh lessons of COVID-19 are far from new—and while fears and injustices now making headlines reflect the daily reality of millions before the pandemic — the sheer scale of this crisis has sparked new urgency around health systems and universal health coverage. This day let us join hands and demand that our leaders focus more on health care. To ensure good physical and mental health and well-being, we must achieve universal health coverage and access to quality health care. We have to ensure that no one is left behind and we can achieve the goals of sustainability.