Towards a Framework Convention on Global Health (FCGH)
by Lawrence Gostin, Eric Friedman, Kent Buse, Attiya Waris, Moses Mulumba, Mayowa Joel, Lola Dare, Ames Dhaig & Devi Sridhar
What will it take to eliminate the gross health inequities that continue to plague the world, the unconscionable health gaps between the rich and poor? The eyes of the global health community are focused on the post-2015 sustainable development goals, with the World Health Organization (WHO) advocating for universal health coverage. Adding healthy life expectancy as an overarching goal would capture the broader determinants of health and offer a richer integration of multiple sectors.1 Beyond improving health, the United Nations (UN) should focus on equity, human rights, inclusive participation and accountability.2 The stage is set for the post-2015 agenda to embrace global health with justice – improving healthy lives for everyone, with particular attention to marginalized communities.
The sustainable development agenda, however, cannot achieve global health with justice without robust global governance. We urge adoption of a legally binding global health treaty – a framework convention on global health grounded in the right to health. What are the purposes and content of a framework convention and how can such a treaty help to achieve global health with justice? And what steps need to be taken to galvanize support for its adoption and implementation? This perspectives paper seeks to spark international dialogue on a framework convention on global health and to explore the pathways to- wards a global health treaty.