The World Health Organization (WHO) has recently released its region-wise strategy on PHC (primary health care), building on the vision to revolutionize PHC in the coming years on the back of the lessons learned from the COVID-19 pandemic.
In the last two years, the firms have taken courageous actions for adapting and responding to the pandemic, many of these actions have changed the way PHC is delivered to people in communities across Europe.
Encouraged by these actions, the new strategy was sanctioned by all 53 countries in the European Region at the 71st session of the WHO Regional Committee for Europe in 2021.
Dr. Natasha Azzopardi-Muscat, Director, Country Health Policies & Systems, WHO, said that people deserve quality health care that fulfills their health needs, even in the middle of an emergency like the recent pandemic.
This new strategy is built on what the firm has witnessed over the last 2 years, i.e. PHC providing important services while addressing COVID-19 requirements, bringing forward this over the coming months and years.
This new strategy includes concrete, clear recommendations on how countries can solidify their PHC systems moving forward.
Spanning from the requirement to tailor care patients’ requirements to investing in emergency readiness in PHC facilities, the recommendations are based on the WHO European Programme of Work 2020–2025 – “United Action for Better Health”, in stressing its 4 flagship areas and their links to PHC: behavioral insights, immunization, digital health and mental health.
Dr. Melitta Jakab, Head of the WHO European Centre for Primary Health Care, said that the pandemic has shown the significance of PHC as well as revealed how fast it can transform, adapt and adjust to people’s needs, especially the most vulnerable. The agency hopes that this new vision and way of operating will support them in inspiring change and show tangible results.