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CS Nakhumicha champions for UHC in Geneva

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The Cabinet secretary for Health Nakhumicha S. Wafula on Sunday morning joined other delegates for a 3km Walk the Talk running Master Class at Place des Nations in Geneva,Switzerland where the Seventy-seventh World Health Assembly [WHA] is scheduled to take place from 27 May – 1 June 2024.

The exercise which brought together various health and athletics stakeholders among them World Health Organization Director General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus,Kenya’s 800m word record holder David Rudisha saw the CS advocating for promotive and preventive healthcare through sports.

She said Kenya is prioritizing mechanisms and strategies aimed at achieving comprehensive and accessible healthcare in utilizing diverse platforms including sports to promote preventive and promotive healthcare away from the traditionally curative approach.

Recognizing the potential of sports in encouraging physical activity for better health, there’s a growing trend in emphasizing the health benefits of sports and exercise activities.

“We continue to champion for promotive and preventive health care and physical exercise is a good way to keep fit and stay healthy.Joined WHO DG Dr Tedros Ghebreyesus,our very own in 800m record holder David Rudisha among others for a 3km walk on the streets of Geneva this morning.Regular physical activity is proven to help prevent and manage noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) such as heart disease, hypertension, stroke, diabetes and several cancers. It also helps to maintain a healthy body weight and can improve mental health, quality of life and well-being” she wrote

Speaking at the event, World Health Organization [WHO] Director General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said The Walk the Talk Health for All Challenge returned to provide a healthy kickstart to the WHA whose theme is All for Health, Health for All.

WHO was joined with the United Nations family, member states, athletes, local sports clubs health partners and the Geneva community to celebrate the importance of healthy lifestyles and demonstrate measures to safely conduct public events.

He urged member countries to intensify their pursuit of negotiations geared towards strengthening global capacities to respond to future pandemics and outbreaks in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic that killed millions of people worldwide, broke health care systems and disrupted economies.

Tedros described the immense disparity between rich and poor countries concerning access to vaccines and other necessities a catastrophic moral failure.

“Over the past two years, WHO Member States have dedicated enormous effort to rise to this challenge posted by COVID-19 and respond to the losses it caused, including at least 7 million lives lost,” he said

“COVID-19 affected everybody, in many ways, and that is why Member States started a process to develop a pandemic agreement to make the world better prepared for the next pandemic. While great progress was made during these negotiations, there are challenges still to overcome. We need to use the World Health Assembly to re-energize us and finish the job at hand, which is to present the world with a generational pandemic agreement.” added the WHO Supremo

Health promotion, as an outcome of sport, is based on the concept that organized sports are promoting health because they offer physical activity practice opportunities, contributing to healthy lifestyles, but also showing evidence of benefits for physical, social, mental, and community health.

Kenya’s UHC initiative offers a paradigm shift for the local health system to improve the quality of services in all public and private healthcare facilities while ensuring these services are accessible, affordable and efficient with a focus on preventive and promotive health at the household level.

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