Minister for Education, Prof. Naana Jane Opoku-Agyemang, has been appointed to the United Nations High Level Commission on Health, Employment and Economic Growth (ComHEE).
The Commission is jointly chaired by the Presidents of France and South Africa, Messrs Francois Hollande and Jacob Zuma.
It has Dr. Margaret Khan, Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO); Mr. Angel Gurria, Secretary-General of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and Mr. Guy Rider, Secretary-General of the International Labour Organization (ILO), as vice chairpersons.
The commissioners of ComHEE are drawn from around the world and are composed of academics, senior government officials, representatives from international organizations executives from commercial and non-profit organizations, and figures from civil society.
Besides Prof. Opoku-Agyemang, the other commissioners include Dr. Nkosazana Dlamani-Zuma, Chairperson of the African Union Commission; Dr. Midlays Castilla, Co-Founder of the Latin American School of Medicine, Cuba; Dr. Ewa Kopacz, former Prime Minister of Poland; Mr. Dinh Tien Dung, Minister of Finance, Viet Nam; Dr. Judith Shamian, President, International Council of Nurses and Prof. Joseph Stigiltz, an Economist.
A major objective of the ComHEE, is to develop a global strategy implemented at national and local level, as essential to support the determinant development of decent jobs in line with the wider goals set by the United Nations, the G7 and the G20.
The Commission is guided by the conviction that the development of employment in the health and social sector is not only an imperative of international health. It constitutes a major economic and social opportunity to promote inclusive economic growth and creation of decent jobs, especially for women and youth.
It recognizes that the promotion of investment in health requires the development of teaching capacities in particular through the strengthening of scientific research, vocational training and partnership.
The commission is required to submit its report to the Secretary-General of the UN at the margins of the 71st session of the UN General Assembly scheduled to take place from September 13-26, 2016. The technical and analytical work carried out will be made available to decision-makers and the general public. The final report will be available in the six official languages of the UN.
Member states of UN signed onto the Sustainable Development Goals in September 2015, setting an ambitious agenda, particularly with respect to ensuring healthy lives for all.
In December 2015, the UN General Assembly resolution (A/70/L.32) recognized that investing in new health workforce employment opportunities may also add broader socio-economic value to the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
As a result, member states requested the UN Secretary-General to explore steps to meet the global shortfall of trained health workers.