Codify self-care for advancement of Universal Health Coverage, says United for Self-Care Coalition at WHA76
Embedding self-care practices into the healthcare continuum has the potential to improve health and quality of life whilst promoting health system sustainability.
Geneva, 24 May 2023 – On the occasion of the 76th World Health Assembly, the United for Self-Care Coalition hosted a side event highlighting the need to embed self-care into the healthcare continuum, particularly in the context of managing the burden of non-communicable diseases (NCDs), strengthening primary health care (PHC) and advancing universal health coverage (UHC).
The event, which was held on Wednesday 24 May entitled "Self-Care: A Foundational Component of Health System Sustainability," brought together policymakers, healthcare providers, academics and patient advocates to discuss strategies for integrating self-care into national health systems and advancing health equity.
Speakers from a range of organizations provided a rich debate, including representatives from the World Health Organization (WHO), the International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP), the Self-Care Trailblazer Group, Imperial College London Self-Care Academic Research Unit (SCARU) and the International Alliance of Patient Organisations (IAPO). Speakers highlighted the potential benefits of self-care, including improved health outcomes, increased access to healthcare services, stronger health systems and reduced healthcare costs.
The event also featured the official launch of the United for Self-Care Coalition, which is a global group of like-minded organisations unified by one common goal: to achieve UHC through codifying recognition of the value of self-care within the WHO to spearhead the development of a WHO Resolution on Self-Care and/or inclusion of self-care as a meaningful component of progress. The Coalition will work collaboratively to raise awareness of the importance of self-care, promotes evidence-based interventions, and advocates for policies and strategies that support the integration of self-care as a core component of people-centred care and PHC.
"The United for Self-Care Coalition is proud to have hosted this important side event at the World Health Assembly," said Judy Stenmark, Director General of the Global Self-Care Federation. "The time to act is now. We believe that self-care is a critical component for the advancement of UHC, and we are committed to working with policymakers, healthcare providers, patients and academic partners to promote its integration into the healthcare continuum."
For more information about the United for Self-Care Coalition and details on how to join, please visit https://www.unitedforselfcare.org/
Members of the United for Self-Care Coalition include Global Self-Care Federation, American Osteopathic Association, Barts and the London School of Medicine and Dentistry, Cardiff University, Clinton Health Access Initiative, Global Coalition on Aging, Imperial College London, International Association of Patient Organizations, International Confederation of Midwives, International Council of Nurses, International Pharmaceutical Federation, Program for Appropriate Technology in Health, Self-Care Trailblazer Group, White Ribbon Alliance, the Australian Self-Care Alliance, International Centre for Self-Care Research