August 2015

Global Call To Action Summit 2015

The ministers and heads of country delegations of 22 countries, gathered in New Delhi from August 27-28, 2015 for the 3rd Global Call To Action Summit for ending preventable child and maternal deaths.

The summit held by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India and the Ministry of Health Government of Ethiopia, was co-hosted by the Tata Trusts in partnership with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, UNICEF, USAID and the World Health Organisation.

Global Call To Action Summit 2015

Inaugurated by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the two day summit acknowledged the remarkable progress achieved in reducing maternal, newborn and child mortality and the global partnerships, support and resources mobilized to achieve these gains and save over 100 million lives since 1990.

Recognizing the centrality of the health and well-being of women and children in shaping prosperous and sustainable societies, the Summit committed to accelerate efforts to end preventable child and maternal deaths by making measurable improvements in reproductive, maternal, newborn, child and adolescent health through the respective country health plans and where needed to develop focused country investment frameworks to ensure that women, newborn, children and adolescents survive, thrive and transform.

The above commitment was captured in what was termed as the Delhi Declaration, 2015, as a pre-cursor to embracing the universal and transformative Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) with the Millennium Development Goals completing at the end of 2015.

Summit structure

Perspectives of 22 participating countries on global strategy for women’s, children’s and adolescent health, strategies to develop scale, technologies and financing for health, corporate partnerships for impact and accountability for results made for interesting learnings. The Ministerial Conclave witnessed the Health Ministers of 22 countries share challenges faced while highlighting innovative approaches adopted as also discuss approaches required for the SDG agenda which resulted in the formation of the Delhi Declaration.

Tata Trusts participation

As co-hosts RK Krishna Kumar, trustee, Tata Trusts, was invited to make the keynote address while sharing the dais with the Prime Minister. Mr Kumar in his keynote address fittingly described the three cornered compounded problem of infant and child mortality and poor maternal health and mortality as the Triangular Evil. He also provided insights on the Trusts’ perspective and the magnitude of interventions in the health arena including a perspective on the Trusts’ funding and the fact that “whatever came from the people, went back to the people many times over” as quoted by JRD.

Mr Kumar was also invited to be an active participant in the ministerial conclave where he urged the group to focus more on innovations in technology as a key parameter to bring scale in the prevention of maternal and child deaths which was reiterated by Arun Pandhi, chief development manager, Tata Trusts, as he addressed the august gathering during the valedictory ceremony on the last day.

The Trusts were also provided the opportunity to showcase innovations in the Marketplace, a platform for sharing of global best practices and knowledge pools that have left a lasting impact on ending preventable child and maternal deaths. The marketplace organized around the five themes of Systems, Partnerships, Innovations, Convergence and Evidence, provided deep insights into the approaches, impacts and results of interventions in the maternal and child health by the 22 participating countries.

Tata Trusts showcased the new technologies that they supported, to make a difference in the maternal and child health sector, in form of the mobile application Arrman and HeMoClo, the innovative Mobile Health Product, being used for improving quality, affordability and accessibility of Healthcare in rural areas. Other noteworthy demonstrations were by the Ministry on eradication of Polio and also Indradhanush, the ministry’s initiative on an immunization drive to eradicate infectious diseases such as diphtheria, tetanus, measles and hepatitis B.

The Trusts engaged in extensive interactions with the Media enabling both Mr Kumar and Mr Pandhi to generate awareness about the Trusts’ interventions, focus areas, its strengths and long-term goals with the objective of strengthening the Trusts’ equity in the development sector. We also engaged with the other co-hosts and panelists on Twitter, thereby widening our reach among likeminded organisations and individuals in similar sectors.

The summit concluded with the release of a Coffee Table book showcasing the milestones achieved by the Government of India in reducing preventable maternal and child deaths together with a Compendium of Best Practices showcased at the marketplace and Report by USAID, copies of which are available with the Communications team for reference.

Overall, an engaging and inspiring forum that provided the Trusts with the opportunity to present themselves as a key player in the maternal and child health space while sharing the platform with international organisations and the global community that demonstrated similar concerns for the sector.