Uniting towards global health: G7 recommits to end polio

High level support from Ministers of Health is critical to ensure polio eradication success.

High level support from Ministers of Health at the Group of Seven meeting is critical for securing a polio free world. © WHO Afghanistan/R. Akbar

At a meeting of the Group of 7 on 5-6 November 2017 in Milan, Ministers of Health reiterated the importance of sustaining commitment to polio eradication as part of their broader commitment to strengthen health systems. They also recognized… “the importance of continuing our efforts to succeed and keep the world sustainably polio‐free, and, of the opportunity to leverage and transition polio assets and resources that have generated major and broader health benefits, including strengthened health systems.”

At the meeting, entitled “United towards Global Health: common strategies for common challenges”, Ministers discussed key global health challenges guided by the G7 Taormina Leaders’ Communiqué. Their statement on polio was aligned with previous G7 and G20 commitments and with the Sustainable Development Goals.

The attention given to polio eradication by the Ministers forms an integral part of their broader commitment to … “the importance of strengthening health systems through each country’s path towards Universal Health Coverage, leaving no one behind, and of preventing health systems from collapsing during humanitarian and public health emergencies and effectively mitigating health crises”.

Under Japanese and Italian Presidencies in 2016 and 2017, the importance of the global effort to eradicate polio and the opportunity to transition polio-funded assets for Universal Health Coverage and Global Health Security after eradication have been highlighted several times. Such high-level political support for the initiative is critical to maintain the momentum needed for success.

In 2018, Canada, a longstanding GPEI donor, will hold the Presidency of the G7, 16 years after it placed polio eradication on the agenda of the G7 for the first time.

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G7 communiqué: United towards global health


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