Universal Health Coverage Day is observed on December 12 globally to highlight the importance of Universal Health Coverage (UHC) for strong and resilient health systems.
There are millions of people who lack better health and treatment. Health is a human right. This day reminds of the quality health care that people need and deserve without facing financial hardship.
Universal Health Coverage Day 2019 theme
The theme of Universal Health Coverage Day 2019 is “Keep the Promise”. On 23 September 2019, the High-Level Meeting on UHC at the United Nations General Assembly in New York highlighted the strong political vision and commitment to ensure UHC for the people they serve. Therefore UHC’s campaign theme of 2019 is “Keep the Promise.”
It is necessary to guarantee health as a right and not as a privilege. Also, the focus should be on real investment in the society where all people regardless of gender, race, religion, citizenship, age, wealth, etc, get the quality health care that they need without facing any financial hardship.
Universal Health Coverage Day history
The United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) on December 12, 2012, endorsed a resolution by urging countries to accelerate the progress toward Universal Health Coverage (UHC). So, everyone should have access to quality, affordable health care which is important for international development.
The United Nations passed a resolution 72/138 on December 12, 2017, to celebrate International Universal Health Coverage Day (UHC Day) on 12 December. Since then, every year on 12 December Universal Health Coverage Day is celebrated.
Facts about Universal Health Coverage
According to WHO:
- At least half of the population of the world does not have full coverage of essential health services.
- Approximately 100 million people are still pushed into extreme poverty because they have to pay for health care.
- Extreme poverty here means a person living on 1.90 USD or less a day.
- Around 800 million people i.e. almost 12% of the world’s population spent at least 10% of their household budgets to pay for health care.
- To achieve Sustainable Development Goals, the UN Member States agreed to achieve the Universal Health Coverage (UHC) by 2030.