A Rights-Based Framework for the SDGs and Beyond: A Framework Convention on Global Health (FCGH)
A growing movement is galvanizing around a proposed Framework Convention on Global Health (FCGH) – a global treaty based in human rights and aimed at national and global health equality. Former UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon issued the following call to action in his report in advance of the June 2016 High-Level Meeting on Ending AIDS: “I further encourage the international community to consider and recognize the value of a comprehensive framework convention on global health.” It is now time for the international community, from individual states to the Director-General of the World Health Organization – the organization mandated to lead the world on global health, and with the right to health as a core constitutional principle – to answer this call.
The FCGH Alliance
In 2017, organizations and individuals supporting the FCGH decided to establish the Framework Convention on Global Health (FCGH) Alliance, a Geneva-based NGO formed under the Swiss civil code, to advocate for and ensure inclusive participation in the process of developing the FCGH. With growing numbers of supporters, from people who have experienced debilitating health conditions to national and global civil society organizations and global health luminaries, with deepening engagement with WHO, and with growing potential for state support, it was time to move from a loose coalition to a legally recognized NGO.
The goal of the FCGH Alliance is to secure the FCGH. A key principle of the FCGH Alliance will be broad engagement. We will seek individuals and organizations around the world to join in its membership and partner in its efforts, with a special emphasis on ensure the participation of civil society and community-based organizations, and populations who suffer most from health inequities. The FCGH must, above all, be a treaty that speaks to their needs, meets their expectations, and secures their right to health.
The FCGH Vision
The FCGH is based on the right to health, from its demands for quality universal health coverage for all people being able to readily access other universal needs for good health, such as clean water and nutritious food. The right to health, and the equality, accountability, and participation that are central to it, should be infused throughout the health system and integrated in other sectors and legal regimes, both domestically and internationally.
Filling in gaps in accountability, governance, financing, and human rights, the FCGH would help achieve the health goals and targets of the Sustainable Development Goals, while establishing a rights-based framework for health in the post-SDG era. More details on the FCGH Annex below.
A Call to Action
As the global health leader, WHO should steer the global response in answering the former UN Secretary-General’s call to action, establishing a working group that includes strong civil society participation to examine and report to the World Health Assembly on the potential benefits, principles, parameters of, and path towards the FCGH. This would provide a platform for further progress towards the FCGH. WHO regional committees and other intergovernmental forum should also begin discussions of the FCGH, as the treaty will need to speak to countries and people in every region.
Please visit our website: http://www.fcghalliance.org (in development)
You can reach the FCGH Alliance at info<at>fcghalliance.org