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2021 Declared International Year of the Health Workers

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Photo Credit: EFE/EPA/ Italian Ministry of Defense

2021 has been designated as the International Year of the Health and care workers (YHCW). This is in recognition of the dedication and sacrifice of the millions of health and care workers at the forefront of the current COVID-19 pandemic.

A statement released by the World Health Organisation (WHO) on November 11, 2020 said this decision was unanimously reached at by Member States attending the virtual 73rd World Health Assembly.

“Member States and Non-State Actors in unison spoke to the critical role of health and care workers in ensuring our health and prosperity. They emphasized the urgency and imperative to address persistent health worker challenges,” WHO said in a statement. 

As part of the ten-year anniversary and review of the WHO Global Code of Practice on the International Recruitment of Health Personnel (Code), the World Health Assembly also discussed the increasing scale of international health worker migration.  Member States recognized the high relevance of the Code, particularly in the context of Covid-19, and called for its’ strengthened implementation. 

The Code was identified as a leading and universally recognized regulatory instrument under WHOs stewardship, and as such, Member States called for WHO and development partners to strengthen its financing, implementation and monitoring.  

Read full statement by WHO here: https://www.who.int/news/item/11-11-2020-2021-designated-as-the-international-year-of-health-and-care-workers#:~:text=Member%20States%20at%20the%20resumed,and%20Care%20Workers%20(YHCW).

Compiled by Carol Natukunda, Communications Specialist, ACHEST