WHO and Russian Federation sign country cooperation strategy


(From left) Zsuzsanna Jakab, WHO Regional Director for Europe, Veronika Skvortsova, Minister of Health of the Russian Federation, and Margaret Chan, WHO Director-General, sign a country cooperation strategy on 18 May 2014

On 18 May 2014, the Russian Federation and WHO signed a country cooperation strategy, providing a medium-term vision for technical cooperation, to support the country’s national health policy, strategy, action plan and related efforts, in line with Health 2020. The strategy will guide cooperation until 2020.

At the signing, Margaret Chan, WHO Director-General, thanked Veronika Skvortsova, Minister of Health of the Russian Federation, and President Vladimir Putin for their continuing high-level political support on health issues. Dr Chan congratulated the Minister on the progress made on addressing noncommunicable diseases and road safety in the country.

The Russian Federation’s role as a health leader at the sub-regional level was also praised by Zsuzsanna Jakab, WHO Regional Director for Europe. The country recently hosted the Fourth Conference on HIV/AIDS in Eastern Europe and Central Asia (EECAAC 2014), and plans are well developed for a new centre of expertise on noncommunicable diseases to open in Moscow soon.

Life expectancy in the Russian Federation has increased significantly, rising from 65.3 years in 2005 to 70.8 in 2013, an annual gain of nearly 0.7 years.

Four strategic priorities will guide the collaboration:

  • strengthening capacity for global and regional cooperation in health between the Russian Federation and WHO;
  • creating a comprehensive environment of prevention and producing health through a life-course approach;
  • improving health security through capacity building; and
  • strengthening the performance of the health system.

Extensive consultations among representatives of all levels of WHO, the Government of the Russian Federation, scientific institutions and other international partners working in the country took place during the development of this joint WHO/Russian Federation product.

This first cooperation strategy covers the period up to 2020 and, as well as integrating the commitments of Health 2020, the European policy for health and well-being, it is aligned with other national and European regional policy frameworks, in particular the state programme of the Russian Federation on health care development. This programme was approved by the Government in April this year and aims to make health care more accessible and more efficient.

About country cooperation strategies

The country cooperation strategy is an organization-wide reference for WHO’s work with countries, in accordance with Health 2020, which guides planning, budgeting, resource allocation and partnerships. A partnership that is true to WHO country cooperation principles is often beneficial to more than one party, through the sharing of knowledge and experience in such a diverse area as health protection and its development.

The country cooperation strategy with the Russian Federation is the second to be signed with a Member State in the WHO European Region. The first was signed between WHO and Switzerland in 2013.