Universal Health Coverage Day

December 12

Universal Health Coverage Day
The United Nations has adopted 17 sustainable development goals for eliminating poverty and building a more resilient planet. One of those goals includes providing universal health coverage.

A coalition of more than 700 organizations in 116 countries mark 12 December as Universal Health Coverage day, urging world leaders to deliver on promises to achieve universal health coverage.

The goal of universal health coverage is to ensure that all people obtain the health services they need without suffering financial hardship when paying for them. This requires:

- a strong, efficient, well-run health system;
- a system for financing health services;
- access to essential medicines and technologies;
- a sufficient capacity of well-trained, motivated health workers.

Dr Margaret Chan, WHO Director-General: “I regard universal health coverage as the single most powerful concept that public health has to offer. It is inclusive. It unifies services and delivers them in a comprehensive and integrated way, based on primary health care.”

The global coalition of leading health and development organizations worldwide is urging governments to accelerate reforms that ensure everyone, everywhere, can access quality health services without being forced into poverty. The coalition emphasizes the importance of universal access to health services for saving lives, ending extreme poverty, building resilience against the health effects of climate change and ending deadly epidemics such as Ebola.