From left to right: Samir Ben Yahmed, Natacha Gomes, Walter Seidel, Faiçal Ben Salah, Guido Sabatinelli  

Technical Meeting in Hammamet Brings Together Participants from 20 Countries

23 September 2014

The 3rd Annual Technical Meeting of the EU-Luxembourg-WHO Universal Health Coverage Partnership took place from September 16 to 18 in Hammamet, Tunisia. The town, known best for its gardens and beaches, welcomed participants from 20 countries to discuss successes and challenges after two years of partnership.

Countries showcased a wide range of activities undertaken, from a recent Conference on National Health in Tunisia—the culmination of a societal dialogue programme—to the elaboration of a Programme de Développement Sanitaire et Social (PRODESS) plan in Mali. Over the course of three days, presentations were made on policy dialogue best practices and capturing its results, as well as communication of those results to a wider audience. The technical meeting was also an opportunity to discuss the implementation of the partnership in countries facing emergency situations, such as conflicts in South Sudan and Yemen, and the Ebola outbreak in Guinea, Sierra Leone, and Liberia.

On the last day, the website for the UHC Partnership (on which you are currently reading this article) was officially launched and presented as a powerful platform to share stories and relevant information.

According to Natacha Gomes, from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Luxembourg, “Supporting policy dialogue is key to building a strong health system.” World Health Organization representatives and members of the Ministries of Health affirmed this message throughout the meeting, emphasizing the innovative role of the partnership in bringing together different stakeholders around the Universal Health Coverage theme and in initiating activities to build more efficient health systems.