Updates from the PreWHA Day 2

Following a strong start to IFMSA’s Youth PreWHA first day, full of compelling sessions, engaging speakers, and a whole lot of fun, the second day of this workshop continued to further prepare the 50 ambitious delegates via covering a variety of topics pertaining to crucial matters of global health and IFMSA’s priorities for WHA69.

The first session by Eva van Swaaij (SSFFC stream coordinator) covered the transition of the Milennium Development Goals (MDGs) to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), focusing on the lessons learned and criticism of the former, to the structural development of the latter with the consideration of reliance on national political will, requirement of strong capacities for implementation, operational accountability framework and strong partnership networks.

Following that, Ms. Nathalie Roebbel from the WHO’s department on Environmental and Social Determinants of Health, addressed a Health in All Policies approach to the problems of global health (in)equities, the Social Determinants of Health (SDH) and their intrinsic link to Universal Health Coverage (UHC) and Primary Health Care. As future healthcare professionals, we play a growing role in ensuring the indivisibility of the SDGs, intersectoral action for health, and learning from the WHO’s approach in implementing Health in All Policies for improving health quality.

After a delicious lunch break, Marie Hauerslev (LO WHO) briefly updated the delegates on WHA69’s agenda items, side events and information on member states during the event.

Later in the day, Dr. Simon Wright (Save the Children – UK) moderated a fantastic interactive session by which all participating countries had the opportunity to present issues faced in their health systems within the context of the UHC; it was definitely an eye-opening and enriching experience to see how the difference of issues are unifying our aspiration to achieve UHC in our countries!


Finally, Dr. Graham Lister (Geneva Graduate Institute) spoke about global health diplomacy and advocacy, as well as IFMSA’s role in this process with a training session on policy brief writing, stressing the importance of understanding dialogue, planning contacts and communication, and organizing one’s self to maximize our advocacy’s effectiveness during the WHA.

Stay tuned for more updates!

Author: Yamen Jabr (PreWHA and WHA Delegate, IFMSA-Egypt, [email protected] )

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