WHO Consolidated Guideline on Self-care Interventions for Health: Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights

Self-care interventions are among the most promising and exciting new approaches to improve health and well-being, both from a health systems perspective and for people who use these interventions. The World Health Organization (WHO) uses the following working definition of self-care: Self-care is the ability of individuals, families and communities to promote health, prevent disease, maintain health, and cope with illness and disability with or without the support of a health- care provider

Worldwide, an estimated shortage of 18 million health workers is anticipated by 2030, a record 130 million people are currently in need of humanitarian assistance, and disease outbreaks are a constant global threat. At least 400 million people worldwide lack access to the most essential health services, and every year 100 million people are plunged into poverty because they have to pay for health care out of their own pockets. There is an urgent need to find innovative strategies that go beyond the conventional health sector response.

The purpose of this guidance is to develop a peoplecentred, evidence-based normative guideline that will support individuals, communities and countries with quality health services and self-care interventions, based on PHC strategies, comprehensive essential service packages and people-centredness.

Last modified: July 14, 2020

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