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Copenhagen Consensus Center

Post-2015 Consensus: Health Viewpoint, Kickbusch

Viewpoint Paper

For Kickbusch, a feeling of unease remains that the issues put forward in the "health goal" are perhaps not as transformative as the synthesis report of the UN Secretary General  would make them out to be. The inclusion of universal health coverage is a major shift, but it must raise concern that it is not prioritized. She is also concerned that the SDGs were supposed to transcend the charity model and move to the joint production of global public goods based on human rights, but in health they continue to mainly follow the MDG approach. In particular, the health goal agenda does not take us beyond the agenda of the WHO and other major health organizations.

There are particular gaps in inter-sectoral and global collective issues. For example, there is no reference to anti-microbial resistance, which is becoming a major challenge. Neither is the need to create stronger mechanisms to ensure global health security mentioned.  Health globally is only as good as health in the weakest link. More attention is required to the "causes of the causes" and the interconnectedness of determinants, drivers and risks and other SDGs. For example, non-communicable diseases (NCDs) are not just a threat to human health but also to development and economic growth. The SDGs should have been used as a political space to highlight the need to agree on the production of global public goods for health and to address unsustainable production and consumption and how it affects health.