Union for International Cancer Control

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Seventy-second World Health Assembly (A72/1)
Agenda Item: 
12.3 Human resources for health

Thank you for the opportunity to deliver this statement on behalf of the Union for International Cancer Control, supported by the NCD Alliance and the International Union Against TB and Lung Disease.

The following comments relate to report A72/23 on progress made in the implementation of the WHO Global Strategy on Human Resources for Health. Without increased investment in strengthening the capacity of the health care professionals to address NCDs, UHC will remain out of reach. This must be achieved through an integrated approach which seeks to break down siloes, rather than through proliferation of vertical programmes.

We therefore call on WHO and Member States to:
• Develop and promote training curricula to enable health professionals across disciplines and at all levels to provide NCDs services: Reinforcing knowledge of existing health care professionals and anticipating the future health workforce needs requires integration of NCDs into new and existing training platforms. This should be pursued within existing guidance and funding opportunities.
• Provide guidelines to maximise efficiencies of multidisciplinary team-based approaches: Each member of a multidisciplinary team – spanning medics, nurses, community health workers, pharmacists, and dentists has unique skills which can be employed for NCD prevention (including through community education) and screening. The distribution of these skills must be analysed to optimise the functioning of the team as a whole, accompanied by appropriate training, support and remuneration.
• Strengthen mechanisms for data collection: We applaud those Member States who have contributed workforce data and strongly encourage countries to develop systems to monitor primary, secondary and tertiary facilities to inform the effective and equitable deployment of the health workforce.

Thank you for your attention.