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The World Health Professions Alliance speaks for more than 34 million health professionals worldwide, assembling essential knowledge and experience from the key health professions in more than 130 countries.

WHA 73 Agenda Item 11.2: Universal health coverage: moving together to build a healthier world

English

Honourable chair, distinguished delegates,

I am speaking on behalf of the World Confederation for Physical Therapy (also known as World Physiotherapy).

This statement is supported by the World Health Professions Alliance (WHPA), representing over 34 million nurses, pharmacists, physiotherapists, dentists and physicians in over 130 countries.

Having a strong health workforce is key to achieving universal health coverage. We remind Member States of the key messages regarding addressing the predicted shortfall of health workers, which included the need to “Invest in health worker jobs for UHC and inclusive growth…to maximise the potential of the available workforce and invest in education, skills and jobs that deliver efficient health impact.”

The ongoing under-investment in the health sector has resulted in a deterioration of working conditions worldwide and desperate shortages of health professionals which negatively impact people’s health outcome and health worker well-being. Positive Practice Environments must be established throughout the health sector if national and international health goals are to be met.

WCPT urges governments to Stand up for Positive Practice Environments (https://www.whpa.org/activities/positive-practice-environments), and highlights the need for urgent action to address the global health workforce crisis.

It is critical that governments ensure decent working conditions, including occupational safety, manageable workloads, stress reduction measures, adequate remuneration, and the provision of psychosocial support and counselling, especially during times of emergencies.

The health care professionals are committed to improving the health of populations worldwide through working together and promoting effective interprofessional collaborative practice. We encourage Member States to work with health professionals to encourage and foster such collaboration to enable the workforce to work toward UHC together.

Thank you for your attention.