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Global Health Security and Universal Health Coverage: from a Marriage of Convenience to a Strategic, Effective Partnership

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    Rights statement: © Author(s) (or their employer(s)) 2019. Re-use permitted under CC BY. Published by BMJ. This is an open access article distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 Unported (CC BY 4.0) license, which permits others to copy, redistribute, remix, transform and build upon this work for any purpose, provided the original work is properly cited, a link to the licence is given, and indication of whether changes were made. See: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0

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Original languageEnglish
JournalBMJ Global Health
Publication statusPublished - 13 Jan 2019


Global Health Security and Universal Health Coverage have been frequently considered as “two sides of the same coin”. Yet, greater analysis is required as to whether and where these two ideals converge and what important differences exist. A consequence of ignoring their individual characteristics is to distort global and local health priorities in an effort to streamline policymaking and funding activities. This paper examines the areas of convergence and divergence between global health security and universal health coverage, both conceptually and empirically. We consider analytical concepts of risk and human rights as fundamental to both goals, but also identify differences in priorities between the two ideals. We support the argument that the process of Health System Strengthening provides the most promising mechanism of benefiting both goals.

    Research areas

  • Universal health coverage, Global health security, Health systems, Strengthening, Risk, Human rights

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