U.N. votes in favor of universal health coverage resolution
On Wednesday, December 12, 2012, after two months of negotiations among UN Member States in New York, the United Nations General Assembly approved a resolution on Universal Health Coverage (UHC) with over 70 co-sponsors, including the United States and the United Kingdom. The resolution aims to maintain the global commitment for UHC, with the goal of ensuring access to essential services and reducing poverty from catastrophic healthcare expenditures.
UN Members States are urged to consider the inclusion of UHC at all stages of post-Millennium Development Goals discussions and negotiations. The document also commits Member States to ongoing discussions on how best to promote UHC at the national, regional and global levels and sets the stage for a High Level Meeting on UHC in 2013.
“Everyone should be able to obtain the health services they need without the fear of financial ruin or becoming impoverished. This vote reflects the growing consensus that universal health coverage is not just an important health issue, but a key contributor to sustainable development – something that deserves consideration in discussions about the post-MDG agenda," said the World Health Organization's Director of the Department of Health Systems Financing David Evans. "Hopefully this vote will give countries that are already moving towards universal coverage, and those that would like to do so, the incentive and encouragement to continue down this path."
The resolution builds upon previous efforts including the 2010 World Health Report and the 2011 World Health Assembly Resolution on Sustainable Health Financing.
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