Accelerating implementation of the European Framework for Action on Integrated Health Services Delivery

WHO/ Jerome Flayosc

Integrating primary care with public health, social and hospital care is crucial to putting people at the centre of health-care systems. Organizing services to tackle acute and chronic care needs while putting people first can mean, for example, that primary care providers receive support from hospitals that play a more active role in the communities they serve, including in handling life-threatening conditions.

Member States unanimously endorsed the European Framework for Action on Integrated Health Services Delivery (EFFA IHSD) in 2016. To advance its implementation, delegates from nearly 30 European countries and experts from around the world convened in Almaty, Kazakhstan, on 22–23 June 2017.

The 2-day meeting was an opportunity to discuss EFFA IHSD implementation across the WHO European Region, including new initiatives undertaken by the WHO European Centre for Primary Health Care in Almaty to accelerate advancement in countries. Delegates also exchanged lessons learned from integrated health services delivery initiatives.

WHO/Europe organized the meeting in collaboration with the Department of Service Delivery and Safety of WHO headquarters. This allowed for the inclusion of experiences beyond the Region, such as from Ghana, Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of China, Oman, Singapore and Thailand.

Countries agreed on the need to set a baseline for integrated health services delivery. This process begins by establishing a tool for monitoring primary health care performance based on quantitative and qualitative data.

This annual meeting for focal points and stakeholders marks the fourth since 2014. Its establishment followed the appointment of a forum of technical representatives on integrated health services delivery in the Region on the fifth anniversary of the Tallinn Charter in 2013.