Minister for Health and Medical Services, Dr. Ifereimi Waqainabete says the health system in Fiji is being streamlined to ensure that all Fijians have equitable access to healthcare services.
Dr. Waqainabete attended the 31st Commonwealth Health Ministers Meeting (CHMM) in Geneva last week were Universal Health Coverage (UHC) was one of the priority areas of discussions.
During the meeting, the Health Ministers collectively agreed to ensure that health services should be readily available to all the citizens.
The Ministers emphasized on the need to work in collaboration to progress towards UHC.
The global community is almost a third of the way towards the 2030 Sustainable Development Goal deadline and it has been noted that half of the world’s population still do not have full coverage of essential health services
Dr. Waqainabete, who is the outgoing chair of the CHMM confirmed that the Ministers deliberated on the need for setting context specific UHC goals aligned with concrete actions and this included:
•Strengthening the health workforce not only by increasing their numbers and securing the appropriate distribution of health workers with the right competencies but also to support all health workers to be knowledgeable about, and committed to promoting and protecting the rights and dignity of all people.
•Recognizing primary healthcare close to the community as a gateway to leaving no one behind.
•Expanding and adapting health services and human resources for health, according to the national need, from promotion, prevention to treatment, rehabilitation and palliative care, paying particular attention to unreached populations, ensuring services are accessible and inclusive and the most vulnerable population are able to contribute and participate in their development.
The CHMM also recorded considerable progress made by the member countries with innovative ideas towards the provision of health care services in a timely manner and at the same time reaching the unreachable.