Health Policy

Powerful global health summit
seeks to address worldwide health challenges

In what is being billed as the most highpowered meeting on the subject of health policy ever assembled, the inaugural Global Health Policy Summit, held on 1 August 2012 in London, seeks put innovation at the heart of international healthcare reform.

The summit brought together around 500 leading health practitioners, business leaders, thinkers and decision-makers from around the world to develop a global community of health reformers with the intention of drawing up an action plan to confront the key challenges facing healthcare worldwide and creating a lasting resource for health reformers around the globe.

This was the first of what is to become an annual event.

The summit was conceived by the Institute of Global Health Innovation at Imperial College London and was organised in partnership with the Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development and several other founding partners including AstraZeneca, MSD, Wellcome Trust, McKinsey & Company and others.

The event was hosted by Professor the Rt Hon Lord Darzi of Denham, Chair of the Institute of Global Health Innovation at Imperial College London, former health minister and internationally renowned surgeon. Several prominent speakers attended, including the UK Prime Minister David Cameron.

In his speech to the summit Lord Darzi said: “The more I look at the shared global health challenges we face, the more convinced I am of the need for bold and radical reform to healthcare systems around the world. The more I study different healthcare systems, the more I see the importance of finding shared solutions to our common challenges.

“Doing nothing is not an option, if we want better quality care. We may have different starting points. But we have much more in common than many people think – we have a shared agenda of reform.

“Reform challenges politicians. Reform challenges professions. Reform challenges patients and the public. That is why reform brings resistance. Resistance remains until the radical becomes the normal. And then the search for innovation begins anew. Reform is a permanent revolution. It is up to people like us to constantly make and win the argument.”

Her Highness, Sheikha Moza bint Nasser, Chairperson of Qatar Foundation, addressed the delegates. She supported the idea that innovation can help provide new solutions to the global health challenges and added, as a longtime advocate for education, that the power of education in addressing healthcare problems should never be underestimated.

Discussions at the summit revolved around a series of specially commissioned reports by international expert working parties, which focussed on some of the most challenging healthcare issues and provided policy makers with practical suggestions by drawing on international case studies about maternal health, primary care, digital and social media, ageing populations, non-communicable diseases and healthcare delivery.

In the reports published and debated at the summit, there are six areas identified by Lord Darzi as “ripe for reform”. These are: Putting prevention first Embracing and reforming the professions Getting patients more engaged in their own care Harnessing the full potential of the pharmaceutical and medical technology industries Strengthening personal responsibility; and Making partnerships central to the way we work “We have heard great stories of real change that can inspire us. Above all, we have heard the urgent need for action, the call for further reform,” Lord Darzi told delegates in his closing speech. “It is an agenda of radical reform. It is an agenda for action.” Qatar will host the 2013 Global Health Policy Summit. Reports from the summit: http://globalhealthpolicy Institute of Global Health Innovation

The Summit’s five key objectives Address the global challenge of delivering high quality healthcare equitably and affordably. Introduce innovative new solutions to tackle the most important problems in health policy and delivery. Drawing on the best international evidence, provide policy-makers with recommendations that are practical and actionable. Catalyse new collaborations between governments, business, nonprofits and academia. Create a lasting resource for health reformers worldwide

 Date of upload: 26th Sep 2012


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