• Tuesday, May 28, 2024

HEALTH

WHO promotes slogan ‘My Health, My Right’ on World Health Day

UK faces challenges in areas such as cardiovascular diseases, cancer, diabetes, chronic respiratory diseases, mental health, and violence against women.

The Universal Health Coverage service coverage index has improved, and there has been an increase in the density of medical personnel.

By: Vibhuti Pathak

As the world marks World Health Day on April 7, the World Health Organisation (WHO) has directed its attention to the theme of ‘My Health, My Right.’ In light of the myriad crises facing humanity, from diseases to disasters to conflicts and climate change, ensuring people’s right to health has never been more critical.

Saima Wazed, the Regional Director of the WHO Southeast Asia Region, emphasised the importance of creating conditions where everyone can access high-quality health facilities, services, and goods. This includes not only healthcare services but also essential determinants of health such as education, safe water, nutritious food, adequate housing, and good environmental conditions.

While celebrating WHO’s seventy-sixth year, the Southeast Asia Region has seen significant progress in realising the right to health. The Universal Health Coverage service coverage index has improved, and there has been an increase in the density of medical personnel. Reductions in maternal and child mortality rates, as well as declines in new HIV infections and malaria incidence, further demonstrate advancements in healthcare.

In the UK, similar challenges exist in the healthcare landscape. Despite advances in medical technology and healthcare provision, health inequalities persist. According to recent statistics, the UK faces challenges in areas such as cardiovascular diseases, cancer, diabetes, chronic respiratory diseases, mental health, and violence against women.

In particular, the UK’s National Health Service (NHS) has been grappling with issues such as funding constraints, workforce shortages, and disparities in healthcare access. Efforts to address these challenges include initiatives to promote preventive healthcare, improve mental health services, and enhance primary care provision.

Mel Stride, the Work and Pensions Secretary, warns of overdiagnosis of mental health conditions, leading to increased welfare costs. He argues for a balanced approach, stating work’s benefits for mental health and advocating against easily signing off individuals due to mild conditions. Stride proposes reforms to tighten criteria for benefit eligibility, focusing on severe cases.

He aims to encourage employment for those with mild issues, part of a broader overhaul of the welfare system. Despite criticism, he stresses the importance of supporting those in need while promoting self-reliance and a healthy attitude towards work, especially among the youth.

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