Union for International Cancer Control
Thank you for the opportunity to deliver this statement on behalf of UICC supported by the NCD Alliance.
We welcome the report which underscores that without increased investment in strengthening the capacity of the health workforce universal health coverage (UHC) will remain out of reach, particularly considering the growing burden of cancer and NCDs. Achieving UHC requires an integrated approach that breaks down existing health workforce siloes to respond to the present and future needs of populations. We therefore call on WHO and Member States to:
• Ensure the integration of NCDs within core, postgraduate and in-service training to enable health professionals across disciplines and at all levels to provide NCDs services: It is essential to anticipate future health workforce needs and continually reinforce and expand knowledge of existing healthcare professionals across disease areas. To achieve this we urge Member States to integrate NCD prevention, treatment and palliative care into new and existing training platforms.
• Continue to provide guidelines and share good practice in task shifting, task sharing, and coordination to maximise the efficiency of multidisciplinary team-based approaches: NCD prevention (including community education), screening, and certain treatment and palliative care services can be provided by nurses, community health workers and pharmacists. Provision must be made for appropriate training, support and remuneration to leverage these opportunities as part of national UHC plans.
• Strengthen mechanisms for data collection: We applaud those Member States who have contributed workforce data, recognising the challenges in its collection. We strongly encourage countries to develop systems which can monitor healthcare workforce density and skills at primary, secondary and tertiary facilities to better understand health systems responsiveness to national disease burdens and to inform the effective and equitable deployment of health workers