Globally, the delivery of health care is changing. Improvements in socio-economic development, increased education and availability of information, the proliferation of consumerism and its resultant access to convenience goods, and scientific and technological advances are altering community expectations of health care delivery.
Health systems and health practitioners are under increasing public scrutiny to reflect the changing times. People perceive health care to be less than optimal, focusing on the biomedical and technological aspects of care rather than the psycho-social needs of the person. People now expect health systems, organizations and practitioners to assume a holistic approach, where the person is viewed and respected as a whole person.
WHO is undertaking a range of initiatives to ensure health systems are receptive to the needs and expectations of people seeking health care. Through the biregional People at the Centre of Care Initiative, WHO Western Pacific and South-East Asian regions are adopting a more people-centred and rights-based approach to health care in the future work of WHO in the Asia Pacific.
Aims and Objectives
Underpinned by a rights-based approach, the initiative seeks to promote people-centred health care as a means of contributing to the attainment by all peoples of the highest possible level of health as the realization of a basic human right. The initiative builds on the gains of various governments and non-government agencies across the world in the areas of patient safety and quality of health care.
The objectives of the initiative are to:
- Create an enabling policy environment for the re-orientation of healthcare systems towards respecting, protecting, and fulfilling human rights;
- Advocate the development of health policies and programmes that ensure the provision of safe and high-quality people-centred health care;
- Reinforce the culture of caring and healing in the context of broader psycho-social and cultural determinants of health; and
- Enhance the capacities of all health stakeholders and constituencies to participate in facing the continuing challenge of health for all.