The final countdown towards achieving the 2030 agenda: the contributions of future health(care) professionals

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This article was exclusively written for The European Sting by Mr. Wireko Andrew Awuah, a Ghanaian medical student of Sumy State University, Ukraine. He is affiliated with the International Federation of Medical Students Associations (IFMSA), cordial partner of The Sting. The opinions expressed in this piece belong strictly to the writer and do not necessarily reflect IFMSA’s view on the topic, nor The European Sting’s one.

The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development was launched by a UN Summit in New York on 25th – 27th September, 2015 and aimed at ending poverty in all its forms. The UN 2030 Agenda envisages ” a world of universal respect for human right and human dignity, the rule of law, justice, equality and non – discrimination.”

There are 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The goals are broad and interdependent.

For the purpose of this article, l would like to focus on SDG 3,  which is “Good Health and Well – being.”   The UN mission statement on SDG 3 is “Ensure Healthy Lives and Promote well – being for all at all ages.”

According to the UN, SDG 3 also calls for more research and development, increased health financing, and strengthened capacity of all countries in health risk reduction and management.

In addition to being a cause of poverty, health is impacted by poverty and strongly connected to the other aspects of sustainable development.

Though, the world did not anticipate the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic at the time of putting together the 2030 Agenda, I would like to suggest that, the COVID-19 pandemic should be made an integral part of  SDG 3.  This is because, the pandemic has been devastating to mankind and the international socio – economic order.

There are numerous challenges facing health(care) professionals and health care systems around the world, particularly during this period of the COVID-19 pandemic. The situation is even worse in deprived and vulnerable communities in  some developing countries, especially in Africa, Asia and South America.

The various ways future health(care) professionals can contribute to achieve the goals of the 2030 Agenda are;

 1. They should be innovative to confront the challenges ahead of them in their practice

2.  They should be prepared to serve deprived and vulnerable communities with their knowledge and acquired skills. They should also be prepared to work under challenging conditions

 3. Future health(care) professionals should seriously consider making public health an integral part of their training irrespective of their specialized fields.

This is because, the COVID-19 pandemic has taught the world a great lesson that, public health issues are very important to the survival of mankind

4.Health education and effective communication should also be part of the skills of future health(care) professionals

5.They should be prepared to sacrifice some of their personal and family comfort to serve needy communities no matter how deplorable the situation is, in those communities, That would be service to mankind

6.They should embark on research which would help address some of the challenges of life,

7.They should be prepared to put in extra efforts and also work  extra hours so that the 2030 Agenda can be achieved

There are many more ways future health(care) professionals can contribute towards achieving the 2030 Agenda. By contributing their quota, future health(care) professionals would help make the world a better place, since they have a role to play.

About the author

Wireko Andrew Awuah is a Ghanaian medical student of Sumy State University, Ukraine. He holds a Diploma in International Law and Global Governance with the International Business Management Institute, Berlin, Germany. He is currently serving as an Editorial Board Member of the Harvard Public Health Review, and 4 other reputable journals in the UK, Canada and India. He also serves as an ambassador for over 15 European and UK medical conferences and over 10 other reputable social networks. A proud winner of reputable awards like the best International Medical Student Award 2020, Sumy State University.

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