The Minister for Health, Hon Kwaku Agyeman Manu has welcomed and pledged Ghana’s commitment to the World Health Organization’s Global Health for Peace Initiative at the just ended 75th World Health Assembly held in Geneva, Switzerland.

In his statement for the plenary debate, Hon. Agyeman Manu expressed Ghana’s support for the theme for this year’s Assembly “Peace for Health, Health for Peace” and welcomed the WHO’s Global Health Initiative (GHPI), which envisions a theory of change based on equitable access to health services, health interventions that promote trust and dialogue, strive for universal health coverage, generate trust, and promote peace and reconciliation.

Hon. Agyeman Man indicated that the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), a global development policy framework and a universal call to action to end poverty, protect the planet, and ensure that all people enjoy peace and prosperity, and Universal Health Coverage (UHC), cannot be attained where there is no peace.

The endorsement by global leaders in September 2019 of the Political Declaration of the United Nations High-level Meeting on Universal Health Coverage shows that there is enough political ambition and commitment by governments to increase health spending, reduce out-of-pocket payments, and inequalities by strengthening health systems based on strong primary health care (PHC).

The youth’s enormous potential can be realized by providing them with education and employable skills, as well as leveraging technology and public-private partnerships for job creation. This would help to reduce the burden of unemployment among the youth, which is a security threat.

According to Hon. Agyeman Manu, health for peace starts with providing fair and accountable governance and social support systems to the people, creating equal opportunities for decent livelihoods for all, and ensuring adequate security of lives and property.

In conclusion, Hon Agyeman Manu said, recognizing that conflicts are a major obstacle to health and that a lack of access to health and basic social services can lead to feelings of exclusion, which are major drivers of conflict and violence, there is the need for a concerted effort at the highest level of government to promote global peace for health.

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