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Submitted by Mandana Kooijmans on

Many thanks for this piece and I completely agree that health has been left behind in the UNHLP report. As health was central to the MDGs with 3 out of the 8 MDGs on health outcomes it was surprising to see the lack of attention and focus placed on health now.

I understand that there is a strong push for UHC being the overarching health goal in the new post-2015 framework however I strongly believe the health goal should be focused on health outcomes that is underpinned by a sub set of health targets that will achieve the overarching goal. UHC will place health in the health sector only and not encourage a social determinants of health/multisectoral approach to health which is vital to ensure healthy lives.

This goal needs to reinforce health as a global concern for all countries, be ambitious, easily communicated, and serve to generate public interest and political leadership in health especially during a time where global health funding is going down.

The fact that NCDs are considered an afterthought in this report is shocking given the high burden of NCDs especially in low and middle income countries where health systems during the MDG era led to siloed approach to health and now lack strong health systems to tackle the double burden of disease--communicable and noncommunicable. Even though the narrative section of the health goal mentions NCDs, it describes it as a high-income country issue which evidence shows is no longer the case.

Finally, UHC should be seen as an enabler to acheiving the overarching health goal. As an enabler, UHC would avoid competition between diseases and provide focus for work on strong, integrated health systems with high-quality services, a well-trained, motivated and interdisciplinary health workforce, and available and equitably distributed medicines and technologies basically focusing on the health sector aspects of acheiving the overarching health goal.