Strong ministries for strong Health systems


"The enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of health is one of the fundamental rights of every human being..." states
the constitution of the World Health Organization (WHO).1 Beyond the individual right to health, the health of the population is
recognized as an invaluable asset that is closely associated with social and economic development. Accordingly, progress in
health is at the core of most of the United Nations (UN) Millennium Development Goals. And yet, disparities in health persist
worldwide. Morbidity and mortality due to preventable causes remain unacceptably high. Nowhere is this more apparent than
in low-income countries in the developing world.
The health of the people is directly related to effective health systems. Strengthening of health systems has emerged as a
priority in global and national health policy and practice because a gap remains between knowing what can make a difference in the health of individuals and populations, and taking action to achieve results. In order to close this implementation
gap and achieve the prevention and treatment goals of traditional disease-specific programs, a comprehensive national
health system that works for the entire population is needed.

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