President Edgar Lungu has called for robust and inovative financing mechanisms to drive the agenda for universal health coverage in Africa.
President Lungu has also called on governments to increase domestic funding for the health sector.
He urged countries to strengthen partnerships with multilateral institutions and the private sector.
He emphasized that human capital development would culminate in sustainable economic and social development.
He said it was imperative that Africa developed resilient health systems in order to deliver universal health care.
In a speech read by Zambia’s Minister of Health, Dr.Chitalu Chilufya, President Lungu stated that he was an ardent advocate for universal health coverage.
Dr. Chilufya was speaking at the Africa Leadership Meeting held under the theme: “Investing in Health to realise the Africa We Want”
He also called for concerted efforts to strengthen health systems anchored on primary health care to reduce the disease burden in Africa.
President Lungu said Zambia he was determined to increase domestic allocation to the health sector to meet the requirements of the Abuja Declaration.
He said it was imperative that access to quality, affordable and sustainable health care was provided to citizens to foster an environment suitable for development.
President Lungu said Zambia regards health care financing as an imperatives in the universal health coverage agenda.
He said Zambia had introduced compulsory national health insurance to improve revenue for health care.
The high-level meeting brought together the world’s stakeholders in the health sector from public and private institutions.
The meeting; Africa Leadership Meeting Investing in Health, held under the auspices of the African Union, and was chaired by AU Chairperson, Rwanda’s President.
Other key speakers included Kenya’s President, Uhuru Kenyatta Uhuru Kenyata, United Nations Secretary General, Paul Guterres and Ethiopia’s president, Sahle-Work Zewde Norway’s Prime Minister, Erna Solberg.
Others present included entity from the private sector billionaire Bill Gates from the Bill Gates & Melinda Gates.
The meeting noted that Africa’s disease burden was high and the health sector remained weak and its performance was poor
The also Meeting noted remarkable progress made by African governments in improving health outcomes related to life expectancy, and recorded improved rates on of child and maternal mortality.
But the Meeting however expressed concern that Africa received only 1% of global health spending yet Africa is home to 16% of the world’s population and accounted for 24% of the world’s disease burden.
The inaugural meeting was held on the sidelines of 32nd African Union Ordinary Summit for Heads of State and Government Summit at the Sheraton Hotel in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.