WHO and WMA renew commitment for universal health coverage

A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) has been signed by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the World Medical Association (WMA) to reaffirm and consolidate cooperation between the two health organisations

WHO and WHA renew commitment for universal health coverage

At a ceremony at the WHO’s headquarters in Geneva today, the two bodies agreed to foster understanding on topics of common interest, including the development, improvement and protection of health, and action on the social determinants of health.

Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General, and WMA President Dr Yoshitake Yokokura jointly signed the Memorandum, which states that two priority goals for both organisations are the achievement of Universal Health Coverage and the improvement of emergency preparedness.

Within these goals the WHO and WMA also recognised the critical importance of human resources for health, the role of physicians and their organisations.

Dr Yokokura said, “The WMA has had a long-standing history of collaboration with the WHO, with which it has been in official relations. But today’s memorandum sets out several specific areas of collaboration on which we can both take action at national regional and global levels.”

These include the realisation of ‘Universal Health Coverage for All,’ with special focus on the role of physicians and their professional organisations, facilitating understanding of the concept and proactive participation and the strengthening education, employment and management of health workers.

Also included are the active promotion of health-related human rights and ensuring the full respect of medical ethics for all people worldwide, including support for the implementation of the Joint UN Statement on eliminating discrimination in healthcare settings by taking action on the social determinants of health.

Finally, the two organisations have agreed on the strengthening and developing of systems of emergency and disaster preparedness at the national and international level with specific focus on the role of physicians and their professional organisations.