World Health Day

07 April 2017

Health is the most valuable nature gift to people. The life quality and families’ well-being directly depends on the state of health. The World Health Day is a global health awareness day celebrated every year on 7 April. On this day in 1948 the World Health Organization (WHO) was established. The main goals of World Health Day are healthy lifestyle advocacy, bad habits rejection, highlighting of public attention to health problems and willingness to respond to new emerging threats.

Of course, in recent years, significant positive nation’s health changes have been achieved: the average life expectancy increased from 65 up to 72 years. In addition, the infants’ mortality rate has halved: from 10.2 to 5.1 per 1000 births.

Unfortunately, today there are problematic issues in Russia in the medical services organization, as well as in the development of medical science and the medical industry.

People fairly and reasonably complain to me about medical personnel scarcity, especially in small towns and villages. It is difficult to make an appointment with a specialist, and this, in turn, delays the medical examination process. A lot of problematic issues still remain in medical care of people with disabilities.

In 2016 the most frequently raised questions regarding citizens’ rights violations in health care were: providing the population with medical and preventive care (54.5%), providing psychiatric care and the rights observance when it is being provided (23.7%, the indicator increased to 46.3% compared to 2015). The number of applications for compulsory medical insurance (7.6%) compared to the previous year decreased by 6% and amounted to 63%.

The topic of raising the prestige, status and financial support of medical workers deserves special attention. The scandalous incidents of attacks on ambulance personnel indicate the need to strengthen the legal protection of health workers.

This year, the World Health Day is dedicated to the problem of depression, which in some countries is seen as a disease and even accompanied by release from work. According to the report of the World Health Organization, three groups of the population are most vulnerable to illness: adolescents and youth, women of reproductive age and elderly people. It is necessary to make possible for many people, suffering depression, to apply for help and receive it.

In addition to the quality of medical services, it is worth to pay close attention to diseases’ prevention and healthy lifestyle advocacy. I encourage authorities and society not to stop at what has been achieved, but to continue to move on. Joint efforts accumulation in the coming years will allow creating such a medic care system, which will align with the highest world standards.

High Commissioner for Human Rights in the Russian Federation
Tatiana Moskalkova

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News of the High Commissioner