Press Release 
October 29, 2019 | Deutsch

World Health Summit 2019 - Final Day

WHO Director-General Tedros: “Health is a human right, but it’s a right that must be realized through political choice.”

Berlin, Oct. 29, 2019 - The World Health Summit 2019 in Berlin ended Tuesday afternoon with clear recommendations for policymakers around the world. A total of 2,500 participants from 100 countries took part in the international summit for global health. For three days in 50 sessions, over 300 speakers presented their strategies for global healthcare and called for collaborative solutions for improving health worldwide.
“Health is a human right, but it’s a right that must be realized through political choice,” said Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of the World Health Organization. “I believe we are living at a time of unprecedented political commitment for health. There has never been a better opportunity to work together to transform the health of billions of people.”
World Health Summit President Detlev Ganten called for unity, saying that the time for countries going it alone is over. He explained that we must work together, across all borders—and not just national ones: “Health needs to be part of all policy areas. Only with real collaboration and policies that support health and well-being can we reach our goal of health for all.”
This call for action is also at the core of the closing declaration of the World Health Summit.
The M8 Alliance, the academic network of 28 academic health centers, universities, and national academies behind the World Health Summit, calls on politicians and governments to put health on the top of the agenda: “All stakeholders need to cooperate across nations and sectors and apply scientific knowledge to ensure a healthier and safer world, and achieve the Sustainable Development Goals.”
The central points of the M8 Declaration are:
- Climate change is one of the defining issues of our time. It is also one of the world’s most urgent health threats. The health of people is directly affected by climate change.
- Universal health coverage (UHC) will be key to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals. But currently, at least half of the people in the world do not receive the health services they need.
- Digital transformation is changing health and health services in a profound way at rapid speed integrating digital technology in all aspects of health and care, but with great inequalities between countries and population groups.
Next year, the World Health Summit will have its first Regional Meeting in Africa. Host is Makerere University in Kampala, Uganda’s capital city.
"We are highly motivated to host the first World Health Summit Regional Meeting on African soil. I am sure that this meeting will help laying better strategies to accelerate Africa's achievement of the UN's Sustainable Development Goals by 2030," said Charles Ibingira, Principal of the College of Health Sciences at Makerere University and 2020 International President of the World Health Summit.
The World Health Summit was founded in 2009 at Charité and is held under the high patronage of German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Emmanuel Macron, President of the European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker, and WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.
Press information and photos of the 2019 World Health Summit are available at
Credit: World Health Summit
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World Health Summit 2020: 25–27 October 2020 in Berlin

World Health Summit
October 27-29, 2019
Twitter: @worldhealthsmt
Press Contact
Katherine Lindemann