Diverging Views Delay Conclusion of Negotiations on Universal Health Coverage Declaration
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The political declaration on universal health coverage is being prepared ahead of the UNGA's high-level meeting in September 2019.

The co-facilitators indicate that the divergent views focus on four paragraphs related to: sexual and reproductive health care services, and reproductive rights; mainstreaming a gender perspective into health policies; leaving no one behind; and the needs of refugees, migrants, internally displaced persons and indigenous peoples.

The co-facilitators will consult with concerned delegations and if necessary convene additional informal consultations in early September.

9 August 2019: The political declaration on universal health coverage is still under negotiation after the latest draft failed to garner consensus approval. The text is being prepared ahead of the UN General Assembly’s (UNGA) high-level meeting on UHC in September 2019.

UN Member States have been discussing drafts of the declaration since May 2019, led by the Permanent Representatives of Georgia and Thailand. The 6 August draft, titled ‘Universal health coverage: moving together to build a healthier world,’ consists of 83 paragraphs. The bulk of the text is a set of commitments to be undertaken by governments.

In their letter announcing that the “silence procedure” for agreeing on the 6 August 2019 draft has been broken, the co-facilitators indicate that four paragraphs are the focus of divergent views:

  • Paragraph 68 on ensuring access to sexual and reproductive health care services, and reproductive rights;
  • Paragraph 69 on mainstreaming a gender perspective into health policies;
  • Paragraph 70 on leaving no one behind; and
  • Paragraph 71 on the needs of refugees, migrants, internally displaced persons and indigenous peoples.

To finalize the text, the co-facilitators write that they will consult with “concerned delegations” and if necessary convene informal consultations on these paragraphs in early September.

The UNGA’s meeting on UHC is one of several interconnected, high-level gatherings during the week of 23 September 2019. [Letter from co-facilitators, 9 August]


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