At the just ended 5th edition of the Crans Montana Forum held at Dakhla, Morocco, participants at one of the sessions which centred on universal health coverage and security have underscored the importance of universal access to health services for vulnerable populations and the need to rethink financing models in the health sector.
The participants, drawn from various countries, agreed that efforts must focus on the accessibility of health services through the efficient implementation of universal health coverage. They indicated that within 5 years, there must be effective access to quality health services for at least 75% of our populations, with 75% of universal health coverage for the most vulnerable and prevention must be at the heart of the health service. They said that health officials must prioritize efforts to reduce maternal and child mortality in line with the Sustainable Development Goals.
They also indicated the need for continuous training, development and distribution of human resources, prioritizing prevention, strengthening integrated epidemiological vigilance systems and planning appropriate responses to arrest some of the health challenges on the continent.
They called for an integrated system for regulating access to safe and quality medicines, in particular by strengthening the action of the African Medicines Agency. The participants also called for accountable public private partnerships in new technologies, information, e-health and telemedicine to bring health services closer to vulnerable populations and also find innovative ways of financing the health system through more active participation of companies, local authorities or other economic actors in leveraging the tremendous potential of African experiences such that households will only bear 25% of health expenses.