December 12- International Universal Health Coverage

1 minute & 30 second read

Universal Health Coverage Day is an opportunity to review progress and identify gaps in ensuring that everyone, everywhere, can access the health care they need, close to where they live and without falling into financial hardship. It is also a day to focus on what needs to happen next to achieve continuous, concrete progress towards a fairer and healthier world. WHO will release the latest data on universal health coverage, which underscore the impact of COVID-19 on health systems and services worldwide and show how countries are working to tackle this.

On December 12, 2012, the United Nations General Assembly endorsed a resolution urging countries to accelerate progress toward universal health coverage (UHC) – the idea that everyone, everywhere should have access to quality, affordable health care – as an essential priority for international development. On December 12, 2017, the United Nations proclaimed December 12 as International Universal Health Coverage Day (UHC Day) by resolution 72/138.

The theme for 2021: Protect and invest in health and care workers

Everyone everywhere deserves access to quality essential health services without suffering financial hardship. UHC Day is the annual rallying point for advocates to raise their voices and share the stories of the millions of people still waiting for health care, call on leaders to make more innovative investments in health, and remind the world about the imperative of UHC. The COVID-19 pandemic has been an ongoing moment of reckoning for health systems worldwide. While the harsh lessons of our global situation are far from new—and while fears and injustices now making headlines reflect the daily reality of millions before the pandemic—the sheer scale of this crisis has sparked new urgency around health systems and universal health coverage, of which health care workers form an integral part. 

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Shristi Banerjee

Lawyer, Jharkhand High Court (India)

Global Representative (India), Roya Institute of Global Justice