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WHO Executive Board Considers Health in Post-2015 Agenda

WHOJanuary 2013: The Executive Board of the World Health Organization (WHO) met to consider a report outlining the framework for developing a health-related component of the UN's post-2015 development agenda. The Secretariat report proposes two interrelated components for a health-related Sustainable Development Goal (SDG): universal health coverage and healthy life expectancy. 

The report notes that even though progress towards health-related Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) has been impressive in many countries, the post-2015 agenda needs to: ensure continuing progress towards these goals; sustain political and financial support; and maintain investment in tracking results and resources. It further states that SDGs should take into account the changing global health agenda, including through: increasing recognition of the social and economic impacts of noncommunicable diseases; a shift towards focusing on means that support health outcomes, such as health as human right, health equity, equal opportunity and addressing determinants of health; and increasing recognition of the mutually beneficial linkages between health and other sustainable development policies.

On its recommended SDG, the report notes that universal health coverage includes access to all necessary health services as well as financial risk protection for all, thus constituting a central aspect of poverty reduction. Moreover, increasing healthy life expectancy depends on factors beyond universal health coverage, such as development policies and other social, economic and environmental determinants of health.

The WHO Executive Board met from 21-29 January 2013, in Geneva, Switzerland, to agree on the agenda of the next session of the World Health Assembly, to be held 20-28 May 2013. [Publication: Monitoring the Achievement of the Health-related Millennium Development Goals: Health in the Post-2015 Development Agenda] [Executive Board Agenda and Documents]