International Federation of Medical Students' Associations

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Seventy-second World Health Assembly (A72/1)
Agenda Item: 
- Preparation for the high-level meeting of the United Nations General Assembly on universal health coverage

The International Federation of Medical Students’ Associations, supported by the International Veterinary Students’ Association and the International Association of Dental Students appreciates the efforts undertaken by the United Nations in recognizing the need for Member States to accelerate transition towards achieving Universal Health Coverage.

The political declaration on UHC which will be adopted at the HLM must be the result of a process where every voice is heard. We call upon Members States to take responsibility to create accessible spaces for community grassroots and civil society participation, and facilitate the engagement of young people in order to ensure population's ownership of healthcare. This means not just the acknowledgement of the work of civil society and youth on UHC but also the provision of technical, material and financial support to promote their participation. Youth should also be given adequate representation in Member States’ delegations attending the HLM.

We are worried about a possible lack of some topics in the political declaration. We call upon Member States to commit, in the political declaration, to providing youth-friendly health services, particularly in primary health care and mental health. We especially stress on the importance on the achievement of sexual and reproductive health and rights for all people, and do not support the politicisation of this topic in the HLM debate. We also expect Member States to commit to investing in the health workforce, and to strengthening and building capacity among future health professionals from all relevant health-related backgrounds.

The HLM will be one of the most important collective steps we take towards UHC and to achieve it, it is essential that each and every voice is heard and adequately represented.

Thank you.