A health system is the way in which all health services are provided. More than a third of the world’s population – around 2.4 billion people – currently has no access to a basic health facility. Many more live in countries where the system for providing health services is under-funded and overstretched.
Our vision is for a world in which everyone enjoys their right to health. Advocacy tackles the causes of poor health, as well as the symptoms. We can help bring about lasting change for many, many more people than we could ever hope to help directly.
Every year millions of women, children and babies die from preventable diseases and complications during pregnancy and childbirth. Indigenous women face particular discrimination and difficulties accessing services, putting them at higher risk of death or disability.
Looking after the health of young people is of vital importance for all countries. Often health services that do exist aren’t youth-friendly, so take up is low. More can be done to safeguard young people’s health – the future rests with them.
Infectious diseases such as diarrhoea, tuberculosis, pnemonia and malaria – as well as neglected tropical diseases – kill and weaken millions of the poorest and most vulnerable people each year. Our HIV/AIDS work can be found under Sexual and Reproductive Health.
Poor sexual and reproductive health creates a huge health burden across the developing world. Cultural sensitivities, gender inequality, traditions around sex and inadequate family planning services mean that millions are missing out on the advice and information they desperately need.
There are an estimated 370 million indigenous people living in more than 70 countries. They are some of the world’s poorest and most marginalised people often facing significant disadvantages, discrimination and exclusion. Poor health and premature death are all too common.
Food security refers to the availability of food and one’s access to it. Worldwide around 852 million people are chronically hungry due to extreme poverty, while up to 2 billion people go hungry from time to time. Many common health problems can be prevented or alleviated with a nutritious diet.
Communications can be used to deliver key health messages in a popular and accessible way. Health information can target hard-to-reach or vulnerable groups such as rural populations, women and young people through radio and television.
Access to clean water and basic sanitation is essential for good health. Every day 5,000 children under 5 die needlessly from diarrhoeal diseases caused by poor hygiene.
Violence against women is a huge problem affecting millions of women and girls worldwide. It is a particularly pressing issue in post-conflict countries such as Sierra Leone and Somaliland where communities have been desensitised to the damaging effects of inequality. Violence against women refers to any sexual or gender-based violence including domestic abuse, rape and harmful practices such as female genital mutilation (FGM).