Qualitative indicators for monitoring Health 2020 policy targets





Member States approved the Health 2020 policy at the 62nd session of the WHO Regional Committee for Europe in 2012. Subsequently, Member States agreed on a set of target indicators and a monitoring process for the policy at the 63rd session of the Regional Committee in 2013, having set 2010 as the baseline. A data collection process to assess the progress of policy developments and implementation in Member States between 2010 and 2013 was established in April 2014. WHO developed a web-based system in which Member States reported on the following three qualitative Health 2020 policy indicators:

  • national and/or subnational policy addressing the reduction of health inequities established and documented;
  • establishment of a process for target-setting documented; and 
  • evidence documenting establishment of: (a) national health policies aligned with Health 2020, (b) an implementation plan and (c) an accountability mechanism.

Countries also included information on their areas of application and submitted policy documentation.

Overall, the results suggest that Health 2020 is transforming national health policies in the European Region, with increasing numbers of Member States adopting and implementing its principles and approaches. Countries have already in place policies to tackle key priorities of Health 2020 for addressing health inequities and their social determinants and improving health and well-being. In a few years, progress has also been observed on new policy developments, as indicated by their increasing number but also by the broadened areas of application, including traditional approaches on disadvantaged groups and a healthy start in life, to addressing social determinants of health such as poverty, expanding universal health coverage and improving the environment. Increasing numbers of countries setting targets at the national and subnational levels were also reported, while policies are implemented and accountability mechanisms are put in place. Altogether, the results also suggest that Health 2020 implementation is reaching momentum and generating new action in Member States.