Country Working Groups

UHC & SRHR: One Vision – Different Approaches

Workshops held by representatives from different countries offered the opportunity for delegates to learn about the implementation of health reforms aiming at Universal Health Coverage (UHC) and the provision of Sexual and Reproductive Health (SRH) services in this context. The following representatives presented experiences, lessons learned and examples of best practice from their countries.


Pamela Martín García - Argentina

Pamela Martín García, Advocacy Coordinator at FUSA AC

spoke about the inclusion of SRHR into the UHC program of Argentina.


Narith Chan - Cambodia

Narith Chan, Secretary-General at General Secretariat (GS) of the National Social Protection Council (NSPC)

spoke about Universal Social Protection in Cambodia.


Lemlem Degafu Abate - Ethiopia

Lemlem Degafu Abate, Biomedical Engineer at the Ministry of Health in Ethiopia

discussed Medical Equipment Management and UHC in Ethiopia.


Prof. Mika Gissler - Finland

Prof. Mika Gissler, Finnish Institute of Health and Welfare

presented on SRHR and UHC in Finland.


Prof. Konrad Obermann - Germany

Prof. Konrad Obermann, Senior Scientific Staff at MIPH, University of Heidelberg

discussed the access to contraception, immigration, HIV prevention and men’s health in the context of UHC in Germany.


Joshua Ongwae - Kenya

Joshua Ongwae, International Program Coordinator & Regional Team Lead at DSW

spoke about UHC and the status quo and the challenges of accessing youth-friendly SRH services in Kenya.


Maria Antonieta Alcalde Castro - Mexico

Maria Antonieta Alcalde Castro, Director for Central America and Mexico at Ipas

spoke about SRHR and UHC in Mexico.


Dr. Saejeng Kittipong - Thailand

Dr. Saejeng Kittipong, Director of the Bureau of Reproductive Health in the Department of Health

spoke about the gains and challenges of SRHR and UHC in Thailand.


Irzek Khenitech - Tunisia

Irzek Khenitech, Director of the Association Tunisienne de la Santé de la Reproduction

explained the progress of integrating SRHR into UHC in Tunisia.

Discussions around UHC and SRH were manifold. The following points are exemplary spotlights of the conversations during these sessions:

  • There was an agreement that SRH efforts largely profit from their integration into health insurance schemes and that this could be a key benefit of UHC reforms for the SRH agenda.
  • Additionally, it was discussed how it is feasible to reduce out-of-pocket payments for SRH services (and beyond) by building on existing social health protection schemes and by expanding the financial protection.
  • Furthermore, delegates looked at how to move from targeting the poor (e.g. by exemptions from service fees) to systems which include all in broader health insurance schemes.
  • Participants also indicated that civil society has an important role to play: A strong lobby power and feminist momentum for Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR) helps to make UHC and SRHR a political priority.
  • Anchoring SRHR-related topics in specific institutions can help advancing this agenda in the setting of broader health care reforms (examples form Tunisia and Mexico).
  • Health ministries (MoH) should be empowered to formulate health output and outcome budget indicators and make the case for health budget (incl. SRH) vis a vis the finance ministry (MoF). In this sense, MoH needs to employ the same language as MoF in order to sensitize the MoF for the needed health budget.
  • SRHR advocates should be empowered to speak “UHC language”.
  • Medical equipment management is not often included in the discussions around UHC und SRHR. However, medical equipment needs to be made available and maintained to enable SRH service delivery.