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This short paper sets out the key health financing actions countries in Europe can take to reduce the adverse effects of the COVID-19 pandemic as part of a broader health system response. It focuses on three policy objectives – removing financial barriers to access, mobilizing additional public funds for health and giving health service providers flexibility to respond – and illustrates them using country examples from the COVID-19 Health System Response Monitor. The primary aim of the paper is to support health financing responses to COVID-19 in countries that rely heavily on out-of-pocket payments, but the paper’s recommendations are relevant to all countries in Europe.
The World Health Organization (WHO) welcomes the creation of the WHO Foundation, an independent grant-making entity, that will support the Organization’s efforts to address the most pressing global health challenges. Headquartered in Geneva, the Foundation will support global public health needs by providing funds to WHO and trusted implementing partners to deliver on the Organization’s “triple billion” goals. Featured in WHO’s five-year strategic plan, these goals aim to: protect 1 billion people from health emergencies; extend universal health coverage to 1 billion people; and assure healthy lives and wellbeing to 1 billion people by 2023.

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