Are you healthy?
Do you consider yourself healthy?
Is the person closest to you healthy?
Do you consider the person closest to you healthy?
In comes Sustainable Development Goal 3
We can’t do a thing, properly at least, if we are not healthy, right? We must ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages.
Ensuring healthy lives and promoting well-being for all at all ages is important to building prosperous societies.
However, despite great strides in improving people’s health and well-being in recent years, inequalities in health care access still persist. More than six million children still die before their fifth birthday each year, and only half of all women in developing regions have access to the health care they need.
Think about it, epidemics like HIV/AIDS thrive where fear and discrimination limit people’s ability to receive the services they need to live healthy and productive lives!
Access to good health and well-being is a human right, and that is why the Sustainable Development Agenda offers a new chance to ensure that everyone can access the highest standards of health and health care— not just the wealthiest.
Has the world made some progress to this, as of this moment? Yes. Major progress has been made in several areas, including in child and maternal health as well as in addressing HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases.
According to records from the World Health Organisation, maternal mortality has fallen by almost 50 per cent since 1990; measles vaccines have averted nearly 15.6 million deaths since 2000; and 13.6 million people had access to antiretroviral therapy by the end of 2014.
We may have come a long way, but we still have a longer way to go. Real progress means achieving universal health coverage; making essential medicines and vaccines affordable; ensuring that women have full access to sexual and reproductive health care; and ending all preventable deaths of children.
Ensuring healthy lives for all requires a strong commitment, but the benefits outweigh the cost.
Healthy people are the foundation for healthy economies!!!
For example, if we spent $1 billion in expanding immunization coverage against influenza, pneumonia and other preventable diseases, we could save 1 million children’s lives each year.
In the past decade, improvements in health and heath care led to a 24 per cent increase in income growth in some of the poorest countries.
The cost of us not taking any action is greater — millions of children will continue to die from preventable diseases, women will die in pregnancy and childbirth, and health care costs will continue to plunge millions of people into poverty.
Non-communicable diseases alone will cost low- and middle-income countries more than $7 trillion in the next 15 years!!!
Here is how you can help….. You can start by promoting and protecting your own health and the health of those around you, by making well-informed choices, practicing safe sex and vaccinating your children.
You can raise awareness in your community about the importance of good health, healthy lifestyles as well as people’s right to quality health care services.
Take action through schools, clubs, teams and organizations to promote better health for all, especially for the most vulnerable such as women and children.
You can also hold your government, local leaders and other decision-makers accountable to their commitments to improve people’s access to health and health care.
I feel lucky. Are you?