Health

World Health Assembly: health issues of women, children and elderly in focus

Health facilities available for older people are unequally distributed across the world

 
By Kundan Pandey
Last Updated: Friday 27 May 2016

There is little evidence to show that older people today are experiencing better health than their parents did at the same age
Credit:Jean-Baptiste Faure/Flickr

Health issues of women, children, adolescents and elderly people were discussed by delegates at the World Health Assembly where experts agreed to implement two new health strategies closely aligned with the Sustainable Development Goals.

As per the strategy, country leadership was pinpointed by experts, who talked about strengthening accountability at all levels through monitoring national progress and increasing the capacity to collect and analyse data.

They also underscored the need of developing a sustainable evidence-informed health financing strategy as well as strengthening health systems and building partnerships with a wide range of actors across different sectors.

As per the resolution, the World Health Organization Secretariat is supposed to provide technical support to the member states in updating and implementing their national plans and to report regularly to the World Health Assembly on the made progress towards the health of women, children and adolescents.

It also requested the Secretariat to continue to collaborate with other United Nations agencies and partners to advocate and leverage assistance so that national plans can be implemented.

Delegates also approved a resolution on the global strategy and action plan on ageing and health 2016-2020. In May 2014, the World Health Assembly asked the Director-General to develop a comprehensive global strategy and plan of action and to address the world’s rapidly ageing population.

There is little evidence to show that older people today are experiencing better health than their parents did at the same age.

Health facilities available for older people are unequally distributed across the world. The world’s population aged 60 years and above is predicted to double between 2000 and 2050, rising to 22 per cent.

Most health problems are linked to chronic conditions, particularly non-communicable diseases that can be prevented or delayed by healthy behaviour.

The aim of the strategy is for every country to commit to an action on healthy ageing. It calls for the development of age-friendly environments and the alignment of health systems to the needs of older populations. It envisages the development of sustainable and equitable systems of long-term care and improved measurement, monitoring and research.

It emphasises on human rights, including the important role of involving older adults in all decisions, that concern them.

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