WHO EMRO 2014: Statement on MDGs 4 & 5

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World Health Organization
 61st Session of the Regional Committee for Eastern Mediterranean 
 October 19th - October 22nd 2014 | Tunis, Tunisia

Statement of International Federation of Medical Students’ Associations on: Saving the lives of mothers and children: progress on accelerating action on Millennium Development Goals 4 and 5 Honorable health leaders, distinguished guests, On behalf of the International Federation of Medical Students’ Associations, IFMSA, representing a network of medical students from 116 countries, we applaud the EMRO member states for their efforts and advancements in saving the lives of mothers and children to meet MDG 4 and MDG 5. As discussed in the WHO EMRO 60th RC, the importance of saving the lives of mothers and children and the global burden they create has been reflected in the MDG 4, MDG 5. The EMRO has been moving towards achieving these goals and for that we want to thank the member states. Even though the level of maternal mortality in the Eastern Mediterranean Region has moved from the second to the third highest among WHO regions, in the past few years; we still have a goal to achieve until the end of 2015, and also planning to sustain these achievements in the future and implement targeted interventions to further reduce maternal and child mortality. As the largest international medical student organization in the world, the IFMSA has a role in the global strategy to improve the health of women and children. Improvements in maternal and child health require a broad concept, encompassing multi-dimensional aspects. To tackle every facet of maternal and child health, IFMSA has developed the following aims and we urge the member states to implement them in their policies: 1. Empowerment of women, as a tool to improve health. 2. Integration of maternal and child health services, where priority is given to high-impact interventions that are cost-effective and address the most prevalent conditions. We encourage health professionals to provide the highest quality of integrated care and to share best practices, as well as to ensure that women and children are treated with respect and sensitivity when receiving health care. 3. Improve access to essential health services, by removing any barriers to care that many women and children face. 4. Ensure that the girl child is able to complete secondary education, and as a part of this work to end child marriage within the region. 5. Recognize the importance of adolescent health in the achievement of reaching the MDG 4 and MDG 5, and implement programming that addresses this gap in health services through meaningful youth engagement. We have an opportunity to achieve real, lasting progress if all actors join forces in a concerted effort. For the health of women and children, and for the wellbeing of future societies as a whole. With the collaboration of National Member Organisations, these aims are achievable and the role of the IFMSA in striving for global development can lay the foundations for the wellbeing of future societies. Contact
 Zahra Zeinali
 IFMSA Regional Coordinator for Eastern Mediterranean 
 rcemr@ifmsa.org | www.ifmsa.org