THEMATIC AREAS OF COOPERATION
The OIC-SHPA presents six thematic areas of cooperation among the OIC member countries, relevant OIC institutions and international organizations in the domain of health.
These thematic areas of cooperation were identified and approved by the Brainstorming Workshop on the preparation of the OIC Strategic Health Programme of Action 2014-2023 which was held on 11-12 June 2012 in Ankara, Turkey, to discuss and finalize the structure of the OIC-SHPA document. This workshop was attended by the members of the OIC Steering Committee for Health and health experts from some leading international universities.
Prevention and control of diseases and pandemics is one of the most significant areas to be addressed in the domain of health. Cooperation in this area is a common interest of international community and all OIC member countries.
In this context, the OIC member countries have been taking various actions against diseases and pandemics in the context of both their national health programs/strategies and their partnerships at the international level. They have been striving to develop multifaceted prevention, care and treatment strategies and programs and emergency preparedness plans.
With estimated maternal mortality rates exceeding 1000 deaths per 100,000 live births, infant mortality rates exceeding 100 deaths per 1000 live births and under-5 mortality rates exceeding 150 deaths per 1000 live births in 2010, the rates of maternal, new-born and child mortality in some OIC member countries are amongst the highest in the world.
Medicine: Information on access to medicines is not readily available. As a proxy of access, WHO surveys showed that:
a) Availability of core medicines varied considerably among countries, and
b) Availability of medicines was generally lower in the public sector than in the private sector (WHO, 2012a).
Both of these outcomes are vital. The former outcome indicates the heterogeneity in terms of availability of the medicines across the OIC countries while the latter implies the hegemony of the private sector as being the main provider of the medicine for the patient.
Most important challenge in health emergencies is the ability to ensure that the actions of all health actors are coordinated and, in particular, the actions of external health actors are well coordinated with those of the national and local health authorities and actors. While an existing health strategy plan for planning health response throughout the affected area(s), including the allocation of resources among areas, could significantly ease the coordination, an operational strategy is usually not available in crisis-affected countries.
There is a strong link between level of information, education and advocacy and health outcomes in a country.
It has been established through research that most of the diseases can be prevented by imparting accurate and relevant information and education to patients and health care providers. According to the WHO, majority of heart diseases, strokes, Type 2 diabetes and cancer cases could be prevented just by educating and informing people about healthy diet, physical activity/exercise and not using tobacco.