Global health-sector strategy for HIV/AIDS 2003-2007

Providing a framework for partnership and action

1 May 2003

Global health-sector strategy for HIV/AIDS 2003-2007

Conscious of the need to define and strengthen the role of the health sector within a broad multisectoral response to HIV/AIDS, the World Health Assembly adopted a resolution in May 2000 (WHA53.14) requesting the Director General of WHO to develop a strategy for addressing HIV/AIDS as part of the United Nations systemwide effort to combat the pandemic.

The resulting Global Health-Sector Strategy (GHSS) for HIV/ AIDS described in this document is only one of a number of important initiatives that have emerged since the United Nations Special Session on HIV/AIDS in 2001, and has been developed by WHO, in consultation with a wide range of stakeholders, in a spirit of renewed determination.

The World Health Assembly will consider this GHSS document in May 2003. The global community in general and the health sector in particular now have an exceptional opportunity to redouble their efforts against a devastating global pandemic and to show what can be achieved through bold leadership and concerted action.

Aim of the Global Health-Sector Strategy

The aim of the Global Health-Sector Strategy (GHSS) is to strengthen the response of the health sector to the challenges posed by HIV/AIDS as part of an overall multisectoral effort. Within this overarching aim four specific objectives have been identified:

  • to advise health ministries on the core components of an effective health-sector response to HIV/AIDS;
  • to support health ministries in developing the policy, planning, priority-setting, implementation and monitoring frameworks needed to generate such a response as part of overall national strategic plans;
  • to enhance and promote the comparative advantages, expertise and experience that health ministries can contribute to national strategic planning for HIV/AIDS;
  • to help the health sector to meet the goals contained in the United Nations General Assembly Declaration of Commitment on HIV/AIDS.

In support of these objectives the Strategy describes the support that WHO will offer, outlining a series of steps, issues and Action Points for health ministries and others in the health sector to consider, especially during the development or updating of national strategic plans for HIV/AIDS. The Strategy can be used on a section-by-section basis to review policies and actions on specific topics – for example, priority-setting; human resourcing; or the allocation of roles and responsibilities.