Together we must make a decisive move, now, to improve the health of women and children around the
world. we know what works. we have achieved excellent progress in a short time in some countries.
the answers lie in building our collective resolve to ensure universal access to essential health services
and proven, life-saving interventions as we work to strengthen health systems. these range from family
planning and making childbirth safe, to increasing access to vaccines and treatment for hIV and aIds,
malaria, tuberculosis, pneumonia and other neglected diseases. the needs of each country vary and
depend on existing resources and capacities. often the solutions are very simple, such as clean water,
exclusive breastfeeding, nutrition, and education on how to prevent poor health.
the global strategy for women’s and children’s health meets this challenge head on. It sets out the
key areas where action is urgently required to enhance financing, strengthen policy and improve service
delivery. these include:
• support for country-led health plans, supported by increased, predictable and sustainable investment.
• Integrated delivery of health services and life-saving interventions – so women and their children can
access prevention, treatment and care when and where they need it.
• stronger health systems, with sufficient skilled health workers at their core.
• Innovative approaches to financing, product development and the efficient delivery of health services.
• Improved monitoring and evaluation to ensure the accountability of all actors for results.
I thank the many governments, international and non-governmental organizations, companies,
foundations, constituency groups and advocates who have contributed to the development of this global
strategy. this is a first step. It is in all our hands to make a concrete difference as a result of this plan.
I call on everyone to play their part. success will come when we focus our attention and resources on
people, not their illnesses; on health, not disease. with the right policies, adequate and fairly distributed
funding, and a relentless resolve to deliver to those who need it most – we can and will make a lifechanging difference for current and future generations.
new york, september 2010
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