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The campaign was launched at PSI's Health and Social Care Services Task Force meeting held in Geneva on 12-13 December.
A BETTER FUTURE WITH PUBLIC HEALTH FOR ALL
Manifesto of the PSI Human Right to Health Global Campaign
Whereas "the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of health," is universally considered a fundamental human right, as recognised in international human rights treaties and the constitutions of over 150 countries, this right has not been fulfilled for the immense majority across the world;
Realising that this is intricately tied to a situation where 2.6 billion people have no access to sanitation, 1 billion people live in poverty and have no access to potable water, and, wars, internal conflicts and climate change worsen the social-determinants of health for millions of people;
Noting that this situation is worsened by policies and actions which put profit over people, such as privatisation, PPPs, commercialisation of health, liberalisation of health services, and implementation of austerity measures, resulting in 150 million people being pushed into poverty annually, due to expenditure on healthcare;
Observing the negative and damaging effects of budgetary cuts in funding public healthcare and the promotion of user fees, as well as the inefficiency and ineffectiveness of increasing private sector provision of health services;
Bothered by the growing state of precarious employment of the health workforce, violation of trade union rights in the sector and migration of health workers from countries in dire need of more health professionals, as a result of poor working conditions and remuneration in their countries of origin;
Considering the need for reinvigorated concerted efforts within and across countries to build stronger health systems and generalised crisis preparedness cannot be underestimated as demonstrated by the fight against HIV/AIDS and more recently by the epidemic outbreaks of Ebola, SARS and Zika;
Inspired by renewed commitment of the international community to a better future with health for all as expressed in Target 3.8 of the Sustainable Development Goals and recognition of the fact that this requires enhanced employment and improved working conditions for health workers as upheld in the recommendations of the UN High Level Commission on Health Employment and Economic Growth;
Committed to the realisation of the human right to health which of necessity requires the prioritisation of public healthcare to guarantee the availability, accessibility, acceptability and quality of healthcare for all without discrimination and in ways and manners that promote accountability, transparency and the active participation of individuals and communities in decision-making on issues that affect their health,
Public Services International will campaign for the Human Right to Health. Thus, PSI and its affiliates would take action to concretely influence the formulation and implementation of policies leading to Universal Public Health Coverage at the international, regional, national and local levels, worldwide, thus:
PSI is particularly bothered by the expansion of big business led by multinational health care, pharmaceutical and insurance companies using a variety of marketization strategies to propose private services delivery. This is having devastating impact on universal access to quality health care for patients, on working conditions for health workers and on the financial sustainability of the health systems. The related increase in liberalisation and trade in services gravely undermines guaranteed public health services.
PSI will thus mobilise to provide evidence and raise awareness in the public opinion against the threats of privatisation and commercialisation of health under any guise presented by big businesses
Decent work also requires that health care workers are able to speak freely and without fear of repercussion about the conditions in which they work. Indeed, when they speak about their working environment, they are primarily advocating for the rights of patients to effective, safe and quality care, irrespective of government policies. PSI shall thus advocate for decent work and decent working conditions in all its ramifications;
PSI will promote the aims and objectives of this campaign with every legitimate means including mass mobilisation of members of its affiliates for days of action, lobbying governments, regional institutions and international organisations, building alliances and forging coalitions, research and affiliates capacity-building and developing proposals for laws, policies and regulations that would bring to birth quality public health for all and guarantee a better future for humankind.