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May 20, 2024
GreentvAfrica News

WHO: 4.5bn People Lacks Essential Health Services.

Tedros Ghebreyesus, the WHO director-general, said this on Wednesday during an online media conference on global health issues.

Speaking on the upcoming World Health Day commemoration on April 7, Ghebreyesus said this year’s theme: ‘My health, my right’, reaffirms what WHO has stated since its founding on April 7, 1948, that health is a right for all people, not a luxury.

He said while the WHO constitution was the first instrument of international law to affirm that the highest attainable standard of health is the fundamental right of all people, at least 140 countries now recognise the right to health in their own constitutions.

“And yet, around the world, that right is often unrealised or under threat. At least 4.5 billion people — more than half of the world’s population — are not fully covered by essential health services, and two billion people face financial hardship due to out-of-pocket health spending,” he said.

“Outbreaks, disasters, conflict and climate change are all causing death and disability, hunger and psychological distress.

“Realising the right to health means passing and implementing laws to ensure people can access the health services they need, where and when they need them, without financial hardship.

“It means addressing the reasons people get sick and die. It means safe drinking water, clean air and good nutrition. It means quality housing and decent working and environmental conditions. And it means freedom from discrimination.

“76 years since our founding, WHO remains totally committed to the highest attainable standard of health, as a fundamental right for all people, everywhere.

“This World Health Day, we call on all people to demand your health as your right.”

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