Global Resources

Addressing the global health crisis: universal health protection policies

Publisher: International Labour Organization
Publication Date: Jan 2014

Access to health protection is crucial for both good health of the population and for boosting the economy. Ensuring that everyone can attend quality health care is a prerequisite for sustainable development based on equity and inclusiveness. This policy paper examines the dimensions magnitude of the global health crisis at the global, regional and national level as well as urban/rural divergences within countries. Dimensions include gaps in legal health coverage, availability, affordability and financial protection of quality services. 

Using the framework of national social protection floors, the paper suggests policy responses to address the crisis, focusing on inclusive legislation and adequate financing as well as making quality services available and providing financial protection. Finally, the paper concludes that progressing towards universal health protection is possible by developing a three-step approach that yields highest rates of returns in terms of sustainability, economic growth and equity. 

Adapted from available summary.