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WHA77 Statement – WFSA constituency statement welcomes the proposed Emergency, Critical & Operative Care implementation plan

WFSA convened and delivered a constituency statement supported by 14 Non State Actors representing health workers from across the patient pathway. The statement was delivered in support of a proposed draft decision to develop an ECO action plan

The adoption of Resolution WHA76.2, on Integrated Emergency, Critical and Operative Care for Universal Health Coverage and Protection from Health Emergencies (the ECO Resolution)was a significant step forward for underserved communities, bringing essential services such as anaesthesia and surgery closer to the people that need them at the time that they need them.

Resolution 76.2 recalled resolutions on universal health coverage 68.15 on strengthening emergency and essential surgical care and anaesthesia 72.16 on emergency care systems and 74.7 on strengthening WHO preparedness for and response to health emergencies.

Without agreed and coordinated implementation strategies, the ambitions of these resolutions will not be realised and we will not see the changes that patients require.

The signatories of this constituency statement serve patients throughout the patient pathway including urgent care, palliative care, and NCD management. We uniformly welcome the development of a global strategy and action plan for integrated emergency, critical and operative care and will contribute to implementation of the plan.

Evidence shows that patient outcomes suffer when vital services such as anaesthesia and surgery are siloed by incoherent healthcare planning. We emphasise the need to integrate these services as a core component of the primary healthcare approach to achieve universal health coverage.

In many settings the same clinicians provide emergency, operative, and critical care, rehabilitation, palliative care and pain therapy. To implement the ECO action plan Member states need to:

  1. Recognise that anaesthesia and surgical professionals in first level hospitals are an essential workforce;
  2. Recognise that nurses, midwives, physiotherapists, psychologists, healthcare engineers, maintenance, domestic and other non-clinical staff in First Level Hospitals are vital components of the ECO workforce ;
  3. Ensure that all staff should receive equivalent educational, technical, logistical, political and institutional support to be an effective ECO workforce;
  4. Ensure safe and resilient supply chains for internationally controlled essential medicines, equipment and related items, routinely used in anaesthesia, surgical, and palliative care;
  5. Prioritise the integration of ECO planning in national health care plans.

 This constituency statement is supported by:

  • Childhood Cancer International.
  • International Association for Hospice and Palliative Care (IAHPC),
  • International Association for the Study of Pain (IASP)
  • International College of Surgery (ICS),
  • International Confederation of Midwives (ICM),
  • International Federation of Hospital Engineering (IFHE),
  • International Federation of Surgical Colleges (IFSC),
  • International League of Dermatological Societies (ILDS),
  • International Society of Paediatric Oncology (SIOP),
  • International Society of Orthopaedic Surgery and Traumatology(SICOT),
  • Humatem,
  • World Council of Churches (WCC),
  • World Federation of Neurosurgical Societies (WFNS),
  • World Federation of Societies of Anaesthesiologists