28 November 2019, Shtip, Republic of North Macedonia
Through the SEEHN Chisinau Pledge, adopted in 2017, Member States committed themselves to work Regionally towards the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030. To achieve the
SDG 10, it is necessary to reduce inequality within and among countries and this can be achieved also by improving health literacy.
Health literacy is not just a concept – it shapes people’s health every day from day one when we are born to our last day.
SEEHN in partnership with the Ministry of Health of North Macedonia and the SEEHN Regional Health Development Center on Public Health Services hosted by North Macedonia for the first time is tackling this subject. Health literacy plays an important role in how well individuals can access the health system and receive quality care.
This meeting is the first one to provide space for mapping the situation that is currently in place in all 9 SEEHN Member States and to discuss and agree recommendations for the continuous Regional joint efforts with the objective to agree on several policy response options to be taken forward.
WHO Deputy DG, Former WHO Regional Director Dr Jakab is declaring that “health is a political choice”, indeed in this case we need strong commitments and action from everyone: ministry of health, other sectors: education, finance, economy; community leaders, civil society, the private sector, and individuals. Effective responses to health literacy issues can improve health outcomes and reduce health inequities. During this meeting it will also be discussed and stressed that individuals have not only the responsibility for their health but also need knowledge and infrastructure to make healthy choices.