25 January 2013

Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York

Critical but Neglected Health Issues Resurfacing, Secretary-General Warns at Davos


‘Every Woman Every Child’ Event, Saying They Demand World’s Attention


Following are UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s remarks, as prepared for delivery, at the World Economic Forum “Every Woman Every Child” reception in Davos, Switzerland, on 25 January:

It is an honour to be with so many distinguished leaders committed to improving women’s and children’s health.

The Every Woman Every Child community continues to grow and deepen.  Last year, we welcomed many new partners to our effort to radically improve the health of women and children — including advancing the control of deadly diseases such as HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria.

From Sesame Street to GE Africa, from Unilever to Teck Resources, from technology giants like Infosys to the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts, in many countries, different sectors and industries have pooled resources and expertise to create ingenious sustainable solutions to the most pressing local challenges, from preventing the transmission of HIV/AIDS from mother to child to ensuring clean water and sanitation and preventing diarrhoea.

The India Private-Public Partnership to End Child Diarrhoeal Deaths and the Nigeria Coalition for Childhood Essential Medicines are prime examples.  These efforts are bringing together financial institutions, communications companies, energy companies, logistics consultancies, international non-governmental organizations, local public health foundations and local governments to create technological and business solutions.

Working together, these partners are reducing the cost of much-needed treatments and life-saving medical products, and increasing the accessibility of essential health care and medicines.

Every Woman Every Child was established as a platform to do just that.  Yet we have also seen that some of the critical, but neglected, health issues are resurfacing and demanding the world’s attention.

We must recognize where we can do more and how we can continue to make progress, not only on the health-related Millennium Development Goals, but on all of the interconnected development challenges.

I will soon be presenting to Member States a proposal for a new partnership facility to help realize the full potential of transformative partnerships across United Nations activities.

Thanks to your commitment, Every Woman Every Child is a shining example of successful multi-stakeholder partnership in action.  We can replicate its achievements in areas such as food and nutrition and climate change.

Let us strengthen our work together in common cause for a healthier, more equitable and cleaner world for all.

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For information media • not an official record