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Poor linkage between planning, resource development hampers any effort to achieve UHC-2030.

KARACHI:Limited linkages between planning and

resource development coupled with lack of engagement with private

sector were identified as major hurdles for the country to achieve the

targets of Universal Health Coverage (UHC) by the year 2030.

Speakers at the seminar organized by an NGO HELLP in coordination

with Global Health Strategies and Gavi - the Vaccine Alliance, to mark

the Universal Health Coverage Day 2017, also regretted inadequate

alignment of political parties of the country towards the 17 goals

identified under UHC - 2030.

Senior health care provider and researcher, Dr. Rozina Mistry,

however, cited the UHC targets to be an array of opportunities and


"Ground realities may not allow us to be complacent, however,

there do exist chances to achieve the targets closely linked to basic

rights of the citizens," commented the seasoned professional.

Sharing details of the shadow report prepared by her on basis of

Key Informant Interview (KII) of 22 concerned officials from the four

provinces and 20 representatives of relevant civil society

organizations, she said different parts of the country were registered

to have progressed in different spheres.

Functional integration was said to be recommended to help ensure

equitable access of people in general to crucial facilities.

Inter departmental harmonization was also recommended as health

requirements of the masses were also registered to be closely linked

to their social empowerment.

Politicians, representing all major political parties of the

country, alongwith health care providers and activists attending the

seminar acknowledged lack of coordination among the stakeholders to

address the health related challenges faced by people in the country.

Negligible priority accorded to the issue of human rights itself

was also identified as a major hindrance in achieving (UHC) by the

year 2030.

Dr. Amara Shakeel, representing HELLP at the very onset of the

program reminded that WHO Constitution identifies health as a

fundamental right of every human being.

"The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), to which Pakistan is a

signatory, recognize health care for all as an essential component of

sustainable development," she said.

Dr. Amara mentioning that Universal health coverage improves how

health care is financed and delivered so it may become more

accessible, more equitable and more effective, said Universal Health

Coverage Day is a great opportunity to promote this right to health


Huma Khawar representing SDG Task Force for Pakistan said the

right to health includes access to timely, acceptable, and affordable

health care of appropriate quality.

"However, every year millions of people, particularly those from

vulnerable and marginalized communities, slip below the poverty line

due to heavy expenditure on health care," she said.

Senior pediatrician and activist, Prof. Abdul Ghaffar Billoo

chaired the proceeding with MNA Dr. Arif Alvi (PTI), MPAs Mehtab

Rashdi (PML-Functional), Erum Khalid (PPP), Heer Sohoo (MQM) represented

their respective political parties.

Pak Sir Zameen Party and PML-N were represented by Raza Haroon

and Shafi Mohammad Jamot respectively.

Dr. Neel Kanth and Dr. Ahmed Hasan deliberated upon Health of the

Nation and Political Commitment and Progress of Sustainable Development

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Publication:Daily the Pak Banker (Lahore, Pakistan)
Date:Dec 21, 2017
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