Giving Compass’ Take:
• Kate Dodson and Loyce Pace explain the newfound commitment to civil society partnerships that they saw WHO demonstrate at the 71st World Health Assembly.
• How can WHO most effectively collaborate with other organizations? What gaps exist in WHO’s strategies?
• Learn more about the 71st World Health Assembly.
The side event on civil society engagement with the World Health Organization (WHO) at the 71st World Health Assembly was standing room only, illustrating non-governmental partners’ long-standing eagerness to advance global health alongside WHO. And Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus sent a clear signal right back to the organizations in the room—speaking to the diverse array of civil society leaders, but more importantly, staying to listen.
“Without partnership, we cannot really move forward,” Dr. Tedros said. And by all accounts so far, he means it.
This positive energy surrounding WHO’s newfound commitment to collaborating with civil society to shape health policy and delivery comes at a pivotal moment for global health.
Dr. Tedros himself has called on WHO to better learn from and work with organizations at all levels of the organization, especially in-country. An independent task force facilitated by RESULTS and the United Nations Foundation and supported by the Global Health Council has been meeting since early this year to assemble contributors, solicit opinions, interview experts, and craft strategic recommendations to deliver to Dr. Tedros and his team.
Civil society groups keep governments honest, advocate for patients, deliver services through community connections, and serve the most marginalized and remote populations.
Moreover, civil society groups can leverage their own expertise to inform government policy. Innovation is another key asset among civil society; collaboration is critical to “achieving social enterprise at scale” as PATH head Steve Davis described it.
Read the full article about WHO partnerships by Kate Dodson and Loyce Pace at United Nations Foundation.
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