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Universal Health Coverage (UHC) Town Hall
May 21, 2019 @ 11:30 am - 1:00 pm EDT
Organized by Global Health Council & Partners
Please join Global Health Council and partners for a WHA side event on Tuesday, May 21 from 3:30 PM – 5:00 PM CET at the Geneva Press Club. Light refreshments will be served. Livestream and French interpretation will be available.
In 2017, the UN passed a resolution to host a UN High Level Meeting (HLM) on Universal Health Coverage (UHC), the first of its kind. In September 2019, Member States will convene during the UN General Assembly to discuss prioritization of UHC at the country level.
Several mechanisms exist at a global level for civil society and community stakeholders to influence the HLM’s final outcome document and how it will lay the foundation for achieving UHC. Additionally, civil society and community stakeholders, particularly those from affected populations, have an important role in mobilizing their members and holding governments accountable through their advocacy efforts. What is less clear, is how civil society and communities can advocate most effectively at the local level over the next several months and beyond the UN meeting to influence policy and program decisions that will have an impact in how their own country sets a path to achieve UHC.
Members of the Civil Society Engagement Mechanism for UHC2030 (CSEM) have led global and national consultations in an effort to insert civil society and community perspectives in the lead up to the HLM. These engagements and learnings will be valuable for other stakeholders to replicate, if HLM recommendations and related commitments are to be person-centered and best serve civil society and community needs.
On the margins of the World Health Assembly, Global Health Council and partners will host a town hall discussion to explore how civil society can participate, specifically at the country level on the HLM with an emphasis on advocacy post-HLM, as well as look at the challenges to its participation. We plan to continue this conversation beyond WHA and the upcoming HLM.
Discussion will address civil society roles and tools in holding countries accountable for their various HLM commitments. The event will allow both in-person and online participants to: gain insight from other advocates working to achieve UHC, including concerns and opportunities; review guidelines for social participation in UHC planning and implementation; introduce an accountability framework and related metrics for civil society and communities to track progress toward UHC in the near term; and identify the specific UHC asks of participants at the country-level (i.e., national level consultations).
The event will have two parts: a small group discussion followed by a panel. During the small group discussion, participants will discuss posed questions on civil society engagement, engagement in the HLM, and actions to take post-HLM. The panel will be made up of respondents from civil society, multilateral organizations, and governments, and discussion will be driven by the outcomes of the small group discussion.