Health for All Must Include Girls and Women: A Q&A with Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus

This week, global health leaders meet in Astana, Kazakhstan for the Global Conference on Primary Health Care to renew their commitment to primary healthcare as the basis of Universal Health Coverage (UHC). As programs and policies are discussed, the health, rights, and wellbeing of girls and women must be prioritized. Women’s involvement, sexual and reproductive health and rights, and gender equality must be part of the equation. This is the only way the world will achieve #HealthforAll.

Looking back 40 years, global health leaders met for the first International Conference on Primary Health Care and signed the Declaration of Alma-Ata which committed to ensuring access to quality healthcare for all by 2000.

Nearly two decades past the target date, much work remains to achieve this ambitious goal.

As commitment builds toward achieving health for all and UHC, governments have a responsibility to establish effective systems that provide quality, affordable, and accessible care to all girls and women throughout their lives. Without an intentional, relentless commitment to gender equality, even well-meaning plans to advance UHC can leave girls and women behind.

To further examine the critical link between primary healthcare, gender equality, and the SDGs, Katja Iversen, President/CEO of Women Deliver spoke with Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. As the Director General of the World Health Organization, Dr. Tedros is the leading expert on what it will take to finally realize the quality healthcare we need for the future we envision.

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