April 7, 2018
Today, on World Health Day, people are focusing their attention on what is needed to achieve universal health coverage (UHC) - for everyone, everywhere. A fitting theme as the World Health Organization (WHO) marks its 70th anniversary today.
UHC means that all people and communities receive the health services they need without suffering financial hardship. At C5 Collective, we recognize that a key factor towards achieving this goal will be gender equality at all levels, especially in leadership positions. Without making the appropriate investments in women, UHC by 2030 (the deadline for the internationally agreed upon SDG’s) will not become a reality.
Gender equality widens the talent pool, adds diverse perspectives, and strengthens outcomes in global health. In fact, women make up 70% of the health workforce, which means they care for around five billion people globally. According to the organization Women in Global Health, it is estimated that around 40 million new health and social care jobs will be needed to achieve UHC by 2030. This includes an additional 18 million health workers. In many countries, women hold over 70% of jobs in the health sector, but are greatly underrepresented in senior and decision-making roles.
A recent analysis of 140 leading health organizations spotlights inadequate gender equality at leadership levels. The findings include that 69% of organizations surveyed are headed by men; and 80% of board chairs are men.
We believe women must be fully recognized as change agents in global health. This requires women having more opportunities to advance and lead organizations and systems and having more of a voice in the discussions of how the industry develops worldwide. Diverse, gender balanced leadership is key for achieving a more equitable world and realizing the vision of health for all people.
On World Health Day, we recommit to elevating women’s voices. We are proud to be part of the Women in Global Health movement, and we will continue to be champions of gender equality by leading by example.
- The Founders and Partners of C5 Collective are passionate and devoted practitioners of strategies which bring innovation and equality to events, conferences, summits and brand initiatives.