Universal Health Coverage for Health Equity: From Principle to Practice; A Response to the Recent Commentaries

Matthew Fisher, Toby Freeman, Tamara Mackean, Sharon Friel, Fran Baum

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Abstract


Universal health coverage (UHC) is defined by the World Health Organization (WHO) as when ‘all individuals and communities receive the health services they need without suffering financial hardship’ including ‘health promotion…prevention, treatment, rehabilitation, and palliative care.’1 Achieving UHC globally is part of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals and central to the 2018 WHO Global Conference on Primary Health Care Astana Declaration.2 Universal systems of primary healthcare (PHC) within countries are widely recognised as central to the task of achieving UHC.2 Such systems are crucial to reduce the adverse impacts of both communicable and non-communicable diseases (NCDs) and reduce health inequities within and between countries. However, while the WHO’s and the United Nations’ objectives for UHC seem clear, putting those objectives into practice, with PHC systems capable – over time – of delivering the desired health outcomes, is quite another matter.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1601-1603
Number of pages3
JournalInternational Journal of Health Policy and Management
Volume11
Issue number8
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2022

Keywords

  • Universal health coverage (UHC)
  • primary healthcare (PHC)
  • health equity

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