The Health for All Advocacy Toolkit provides national-level civil society organizations (CSOs) and health networks with the necessary resources to kick-start advocacy initiatives on universal health coverage (UHC). It offers advocates a central reference point—a ‘one-stop shop’ for key information and tools to advocate UHC, hold policy-makers accountable for their commitments, and build a broad social movement within civil society to support health for all.
It is primarily aimed at advocates who focus on specific health issues or Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) beyond health who are new to UHC policy and will enable them to take practical steps to incorporate UHC advocacy into their work.
This toolkit responds to the specific needs of civil society. In the lead up to the United Nations High-Level Meeting (HLM) on UHC in 2019, the Civil Society Engagement Mechanism for UHC2030 (CSEM) hosted country-level sessions where civil society asked for more knowledge and information about UHC and global level advocacy initiatives and platforms. Subsequently, the CSEM surveyed constituents and broader networks to understand the specific kinds of information and resources CSOs wanted. The survey received over 100 respondents from 40 countries. Over 75% asked for practical tools and guidance for UHC advocacy. Many provided specific ideas, such as including case studies and examples. Lastly, the CSEM scanned existing toolkits to ensure the new toolkit complements existing resources.
The Toolkit has three sections:
- Part 1: Introduction to Universal Health Coverage—provides an introduction to UHC, what it is, why health for all is vital, and how it can contribute to health as well as other SDGs. This section is particularly informative for those new to UHC as it outlines the key concepts and actors, and gives a timeline and milestones to date. It describes the key players at global and regional levels to enable advocates to ground their advocacy work in the broader UHC ecosystem. It is designed to equip users with technical knowledge around the essential UHC building blocks necessary for advocating UHC with various stakeholders.
- Part 2: Why civil society needs to engage in Universal Health Coverage—explores the critical role of civil society and communities in all stages of UHC design and implementation, and conveys civil society’s key advocacy calls to action. It includes case studies and vignettes that demonstrate the impact civil society has had and continues to have in decision-making for UHC, especially in ensuring health equity and holding leaders accountable.
- Part 3: How to participate—provides step-by-step guidance on advocating for UHC at the national level. This section walks the user through essential processes for creating an advocacy action plan, including defining the key challenges and bottlenecks and establishing where their country is on the road to UHC. This will help frame the activities and goals of the specific advocacy plan. The toolkit explains the process of mapping both advocacy targets and the stakeholders to collaborate with. Users will also learn how to develop key advocacy messages and incorporate them into ongoing advocacy work. This section provides practical tools and will help CSOs determine their budgets and measure their progress.
- The resource library further links users to other complementary toolkits, additional learning materials and tools for their advocacy campaigns.
Rebekah Webb wrote this toolkit with contributions from Eliana Monteforte, Aishling Thurow and Carthi Mannikarottu.
A special thanks to Masaki Inaba, Oanh Khuất Thị Hải, Kirsten Zindel, Dumiso Gatsha, Amy Boldosser-Boesch, Action for Global Health, Aidsfonds, Amref Health Africa, Centre for Supporting Community Development Initiatives, Equal International, Fundación Huesped, Global Health Council, GNP+, Joint Learning Agenda, Results International and Success Capital for their important contributions to the development of this toolkit.
Design: Kim Martin
Editorial review: Jane Coombes