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UAE Sets Model For Delivering Best Healthcare To Woman And Children: Fatima Tells Global Experts Group
(4 April 2016)

 

The UAE has taken significant measures to heighten awareness about the risks women, children, and adolescents are facing across the world, H.H. Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, Chairwoman of the General Women's Union (GWU), Supreme Chairwoman of the Family Development Foundation (FDF) and President of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood, said.

''Our state has become a model to be emulated in granting these vital segments in the community their complete rights to enable them achieve development and progress in their lives. By doing so, the UAE has occupied a prominent ranking in international reports and indices measuring the state of affairs of women, children, and adolescents,'' HH said in a keynote address at the Experts' Consultation Meeting on reproductive, maternal, babies, child and adolescent health: life-saving priorities in all settings.

The Abu Dhabi meeting, which assembles an elite galaxy of international multi-sectoral experts and specialists, is being convened at a crucial time when these groups are facing unprecedented threats in different parts of the world including deprivation of simple basic human rights. They, HH noted, are victims of wars, discrimination, poverty, famine and other life-threatening risks.

In her address at the two-day meeting in Abu Dhabi, read out on her behalf by Reem Al Falasy, Secretary-General of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood, HH said thanks to the far-sighted vision of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, women, children, and adolescents have become the cornerstone for realising sustainable social and economic development and ensuring stability, progress and welfare of the society.

As many as 70 key stakeholders and representatives from 32 local, regional and international organisations gathered in Abu Dhabi today to develop a 5-year plan for implementation of the Global Strategy for Women's, Children's, and Adolescents'Health (2016-2030). The meeting is part of the efforts to implement the updated Global Strategy 2016-2030 for Women's, Children's, and Adolescents' Health, which was launched by the United Nations (UN) in September 2015, building on new evidence since the original Global Strategy of 2010, and aligning with the targets and indicators developed for the framework of Sustainable Development Goals.

Over the two-day meeting, multi-disciplinary experts will explore options available for supporting the implementation of strategies and approaches in an effective way and conduct research needed to bridge the existing gaps in issues concerning health of women, children and adolescents.

A key outcome of the Abu Dhabi consultation is to reach an agreement on priorities for a five-year implementation plan which will be adopted and then presented to the World Health Assembly, the decision-making body of the World Health Organisation, in May 2016, for endorsement. The meeting also seeks to increase public sector engagement to contribute more funds and investment in developmental and humanitarian initiatives and projects.

In her welcome address, HRH Princess Sarah Zeid, Director, Every Woman Every Child Everywhere Movement, expressed her deep gratitude to HH Sheikha Fatima for her unwavering commitment to providing all forms of support to the vital segments of women, babies, children and adolescents everywhere in the world, particularly those reeling under hazardous circumstances.

''During the current year, we have witnessed very important developments, mainly in the transition from a strategic vision to the practical application with regard to the global strategy for every woman and every child,'' she said, adding, ''Since last year, we have managed to attract new key strategic partners,'' she added.

The meeting features panel discussions and workshops on a wide range of issues including mechanisms, a programme time-frame and identifying stakeholders for implementing the strategy, including goals of this meeting. A strategic workforce will be set up to plan national healthcare mechanisms for sensitive aspects that involve risks.

The expert consultation meeting follows a similar event Abu Dhabi hosted in February 2015 during which a group of experts representing UN agencies, governments, civil society, academia and specialised foundations met to update the UN Secretary General's Global Strategy for Women's and Children's Health for the post-2015 era and draft policy recommendations that will be integrated into the Every Woman Every Child Global Strategy.

The Global Strategy for Women['s, Children's and Adolescents Health, 2016–2030, an updated version of thee Global Strategy on Women's and Children's Health, 2010-2015, includes new areas of focus and encompasses 17 health and health-related targets, among the 169 targets of the Sustainable Development Goals, that align with global action plans that have been previously endorsed by WHO's Member States.

The Global Strategy envisages a world in which every woman, child and adolescent, in every setting, realises their rights to physical and mental health and well-being, has social and economic opportunities and is fully able to participate in shaping prosperous and sustainable societies.

The three overarching objectives of the updated Global Strategy are Survive, Thrive and Transform. With its full implementation supporting the country's priorities and plans and building the momentum of Every Woman Every Child, no woman, child or adolescent should face a greater risk of preventable death because of where they live or who they are. But ending preventable death is just the beginning. By helping to create an enabling environment for health, the Global Strategy aims to transform societies so that women, children and adolescents everywhere can realise their rights to the highest attainable standards of health and well-being. This, in turn, will deliver enormous social, demographic and economic benefits.

The Global Strategy provides a road map for attaining these ambitious objectives and supporting countries in starting to implement the post-2015 agenda without delay – based on the evidence of what is needed and what works. It is relevant to all countries, including those that have already reached some of the proposed absolute national targets. Reducing sub-national inequities, ensuring universal health coverage, and progressively realising the right to health and healthcare of every woman, child and adolescent everywhere all remain challenges in most settings.



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