The World Health Professions Alliance speaks for more than 41 million health professionals worldwide, assembling essential knowledge and experience from the key health professions in more than 130 countries.
WHPA’s recent report "What the Covid-19 pandemic has exposed" highlights the evidence and knowledge gathered by its five organizations on the impact of the pandemic on health professionals worldwide. We emphasize the urgent need to protect and safeguard health professionals and thus to improve the resilience of health systems in health emergency planning and response, and to strengthen mental health and psychosocial support for health professionals, both during and after pandemics and emergency situations.
To progress on UHC, there must be adequate and sustainably financed health workforce development, with a focus on integrated service delivery for primary health care. Governments and employers must provide this workforce with positive practice environments, especially during emergencies. We also welcome the call for national health systems to be inclusive of civil society.
The WHPA appreciates the proposal to establish a Global Health Emergency Council and underlines that civil society organizations must be involved in its work. We strongly support the development of a cohesive multidisciplinary and professionalized health emergency workforce. We emphasize the need for decent, safe, and responsive working conditions for the health workforce to deliver better health outcomes.
We are concerned by the inadequate access to quality NCD care and its insufficient inclusion in essential health benefit packages. 122 countries reported a disruption of NCD care due to the COVID-19 pandemic in a survey to WHO. If the burden of NCDs is to be effectively addressed, it is imperative to adopt a collaborative, interprofessional, community-based and person-centred approach.
The delivery of high-quality health services depends on environments that support decent work conditions. Throughout the pandemic, healthcare personnel have worked long hours, faced unwarrantable violence and worsened mental health in high-pressure environments. Under-investment has resulted in the deterioration of working conditions. The “protection and performance” of the HWF requires legally binding strategies to guarantee the safety of health personnel especially in high-risk settings, including rural areas.
WHPA supports the NCD implementation roadmap which aligns tools to PHC and UHC frameworks to shift health systems from models suited for acute illness to integrated primary care systems, supported by national guidelines, providing access to NCD diagnostics and essential medicines, as well as investment in the health workforce.
WHPA strongly supports the call for the crucial and urgent increased investment in health systems. However, this should not only be for a global health emergency workforce able to respond rapidly to any acute event, but it must be applied to the health workforce as a whole.
Having a strong health workforce is key to supporting the world through any health emergency. We urge Member States to heed the Independent Panel’s urgent call to take immediate action to stop the pandemic and to follow recommendations to ensure that any future infectious disease outbreak does not become another catastrophic pandemic. In particular, countries must invest in preparedness now, and support their health professionals accordingly.
We thank WHO for the DG’s report on the action plan for health employment and inclusive economic growth and urge Member States to be bold when discussing a renewed mandate. This should leverage the International Year of Health and Care Workers, focusing on the need to retain, protect and invest in the health workforce for COVID-19 recovery and into the future.
May 2019 - Women, children, and adolescents are the most vulnerable demographic population in healthcare. Given the important role that HCPs play in improving access to services for vulnerable populations, WHPA urges Members States to invest in and support the healthcare workforce, of which the majority are women.
May 2019 - WHPA urges governments to allocate resources to develop, implement and monitor WASH standards, incentivise facility leaders to implement these standards and offer continuing development and training for HPs.
May 2019 - WHPA welcomes the report on the WHO Global Strategy on Human Resources for Health: Workforce 2030, and echoes the encouragement given to Member States to report data and approve streamlined reporting. We stress that health professionals are here to help and are key stakeholders in improving quality of care and health systems. We encourage states to work with all cadres of health professionals in order to better understand, prepare and plan for the existing and future needs of their communities and health systems.
January 2019 - WHPA urges governments to allocate resources to develop, implement and monitor WASH standards, incentivise facility leaders to implement these standards and offer continuing development and training for HCPs.
January 2019 - WHPA stresses the need for planning and monitoring in the implementation of unregulated workers (e.g. Community-Based Workers) in order to avoid creating fragmented systems that fail to meet the total needs of patients.
May 2018 - WHPA welcomes the Director General’s report on WHO’s work in Health Emergencies emphasizing not only the alarming number of critical emergencies, but also the fact that healthcare professionals and facilities are increasingly attacked during situations of armed conflict – a clear violation of international humanitarian and human rights law.
May 2018 - WHPA is convinced that the success of mHealth in improving access to and efficiency of healthcare services ultimately depends on the quality of care delivered by healthcare professionals (HCPs).
May 2018 - Healthcare professionals have a professional and ethical duty to contribute to the mitigation of the risks that climate change pose and to support people and communities to adapt to its impacts. WHPA works to enable our professions to support healthcare organisations to contribute to climate change mitigation through implementation of environmental policies and sustainable practices.
May 2018 - WHPA insists that interprofessional collaboration is a prerequisite for people-centred services, in order to avoid duplication, gaps and discontinuity of care in the patient’s journey through the health system. Interprofessional collaborative practice requires opportunities to interact meaningfully with other professions from early on in a professional’s development, such as during undergraduate education.
May 2017 - WHPA supports WHO and UNODC in their collaborative activities that focus on implementing the health-related operational recommendations of UNGASS 2016 and strengthening the role of health systems in preventing and addressing addictions and resulting disorders.
May 2017 - WHPA highlights that late or denied treatment is discriminatory and contravenes a fundamental human right. Refusing to provide healthcare is not only ethically wrong, it poses a serious public health threat. Therefore, WHPA urges full access to quality healthcare as well as safe and adequate living conditions for all are ensured, regardless of migration status.
May 2017 - WHPA congratulates the High-Level Commission for the ten clear and practical recommendations to transform the health workforce for the SDGs. A fit-for-purpose healthcare system and workforce is strongly related to a fit-for-purpose regulatory environment to ensure the public’s best interests are met.
May 2017 - WHPA urges WHO to provide assistance to Member States to implement the priorities included in the draft Framework of Priorities and Guiding Principles to promote the health of refugees and migrants.
January 2017 - WHPA welcomes WHO’s efforts in promoting migrant health and wish to highlight that late or denied treatment is discriminatory and contravenes a fundamental human right. Refusing to provide healthcare is not only ethically wrong, it poses a serious public health risk.
January 2017 - The WHPA welcomes the progress made by the mechanism. We observe, with interest, the increasing and varying initiatives from governments, and from public and private sectors. However we call for consistency, integration and coordination of solutions at both local and international level.
January 2017 - WHPA strongly supports the Commission’s report including the ten recommendations and five specific actions and the clear statement it has made on investing in health. Health is a strong driver of the economy, not an economic drain – a strong and resilient healthcare system offers secure jobs, helps countries to better overcome economic crises and respond to catastrophes and contributes to social justice and stability.
May 2016 - As health professionals, WHPA welcomes the Draft Global Strategy on Human Resources for Health (HRH). It recognizes the crucial role of the health workforce (HW) in realizing the goal of universal health coverage (UHC) and successful achievement of the SDGs.
May 2016 - With current demographic trends, the need for well‐integrated primary health services and nursing‐home facilities will only grow. The WHPA is committed to working with governments to create a competent health workforce adequate to addressing the needs of older patients.
May 2016 - WHPA calls for a strong and integrated health systems that are well-equipped with necessary materials and trained healthcare professionals to provide quality-ensured health services to all people in need across the lifespan.
May 2016 - WHPA regrets that in the final draft of the framework, the benefits and, therefore, the value of the status of a non-governmental organisation in official relations with WHO, are modest compared with non-state actors without this status.
January 2016 - The WHPA welcomes the Draft Global Strategy on Human Resources for Health, recognizing the crucial role of the health workforce (HW) in preparing health care system to manage the challenges of the future and achieve the newly adopted Sustainable Development Goals.
January 2016 - WHPA argues that requiring NSAs in official relations with WHO to ensure “the Membership of an NGO should not contain individuals associated with private sector entities or philanthropic foundations and academic institutions not at arm’s length with private sector” is unrealistic to fulfil for individual membership‐based NGOs.
World Health Professions Alliance
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WHPA brings together the global organizations representing the world’s dentists, nurses, pharmacists, physical therapists and physicians and speaks for more than 41 million health care professionals in more than 130 countries. WHPA works to improve global health and the quality of patient care and facilitates collaboration among the health professions and major stakeholders.