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Call For Unifying Vision For Pacific

Call For Unifying Vision For Pacific
Front from left: World Health Organisation rep for South Pacific and Director, Pacific Technical Support Division Dr Corinne Capuano, Cook Islands Secretary of Health Dr Josephine Herman, Minister for Health and Medical Services Rosy Akbar, Dr Merehau Mervin and Pacific Community Deputy Director Audrey Aumua with the delegates at the Official Opening of the 6th Heads of the Health Meeting at The Westin Resort on Denarau on April 19, 2018. Photo: Waisea Nasokia
April 20
10:00 2018

 

The healthy islands vision should remain a unifying vision for health development in the Pacific, says Minister for Health and Medical Services Rosy Akbar.

Ms Akbar made the remark at the opening of the 6th Heads of the Health Meeting at the Westin Resort, Denarau, on Thursday.

She said, “Human Resources for Health is one of the critical foundations for achieving enhanced health services. A strong health workforce is vital to the achievement of global and national health targets”.

“Decision-makers need robust evidence on which to base decisions about how to respond to workforce challenges. Each country may require its own combination of interventions to tackle stunting reflecting each country’s unique context.”

Ms Akbar said the two-day meeting should empower the heads of health to devise efficient policies and programmes to enhance opportunities for the development of human resources for health, which continues to be a challenge for most of the Pacific.

“Our future is not possible without being healthy. Health is fundamental. But the Pacific is especially vulnerable,” she added.

“I hope and urge you at the same time to please put in your efforts into this and work closely with WHO for this goal, it is important for our nations.

“Having said that, the ‘Healthy Islands’ has proved to be an enduring vision for the health of the Pacific people. Improvement of national health information systems was recognised as a key to implementing the monitoring framework as such this meeting will enable the nations to revise the strategies for better health outcomes.”

Action plan

The outcome of this meeting is a consolidated Pacific Action Plan for the World Health Meeting Special Initiative on Climate Change and Health in Small Island Developing States.

“In this meeting we all agreed to fast track the process so that the Action Plan can be endorsed and to be launched in just a few weeks from now at the World Health Assembly in May,” Ms Akbar said.

According to her, the first report on the Pacific Monitoring Alliance for NCD Action (MANA) will be tabled. A monitoring, evaluation and learning framework is critical in assessing progress and guiding action.

“Indeed this forum is a great opportunity to ensure that Health Ministers are provided with clear guidance, advice and support to enable them to make informed decisions on policy options to address regional health issues of strategic importance,” Ms Akbar said.

Edited by Epineri Vula

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