Lévis IHCF 2012 Declaration

Issued during the International Health Cooperatives Forum under the theme of “Health Cooperatives Build a Better World”

Lévis, October 12, 2012

Present on five continents, in various sizes and types, motivated by a philosophy of action based on individual and collective empowerment, all in a democratic framework, health co-operatives enrich the various socio-health systems through their innovative nature, their values of participation, democracy and mutual co-operation among socio-economic partners.

Drawing on the most recent thinking and research on the subject, we share the following definition of health: it is a dynamic process of personal, social, spiritual, emotional and collective adaptability, vitality, development and the ability to deal with challenges.   Health is a basic right for all and a resource for carrying out daily activities with joy and energy.

We, the participants in the IVth  International Health Co-operatives Forum 2012:

  1. Endorse the five resolutions from the Tokyo Declaration of 2007 covering, respectively: —combating poverty —the establishment of peace —protection of the environment —the creation of healthy communities and –the development of professional health resources in sufficient quantity;
  2. Reiterate our desire to involve the members or diverse categories of members in multiple-partner co-operatives in the conception, orientation, development and evaluation the health services provided by our co-operatives.
  3. Strongly recall the principles and provisions that were contained in the World Health Organization’s constitution (1948) and that were presented during many international conferences on health promotion, which is the essential nature of health equity. As such, access to primary health services for all must remain a priority;
  4.  Acknowledge that the best way to achieve the objectives of health promotion and disease prevention is to act on the social determinants of health in accordance with the recommendation by the World Health Organization and to pay particular attention to lifestyle-related non-communicable diseases;
  5. Believe that the time has come to raise the alarm on the tremendous increase in mental health problems in order to stimulate international co-ordinated, strategic thinking and action in promoting individual and collective psychological resilience and early intervention with situations of psychological distress;
  6. Salute initiatives such as the networks of Healthy Cities and Villages and Senior-friendly Municipalities that, particularly here in Canada and Quebec, have taken concrete action to reach citizens in their daily lives, all in a collaborative framework of civil society and government institutions that increases quality of life, well-being, the power to act and collective intelligence;
  7. Encourage the propagation of multi-sectoral and whole- society approaches to what are increasingly proving to be global health problems as well as the integration of health into the preparation of all laws and policies;
  8. Hope that the proclamation by the United Nations Organization, 2012, International Year of Co-operatives enables the sense of personal and group responsibility specific to the co-operative movement to be conveyed to the people, to the economic powers and the governments of all nations, so that the 21st century becomes one of “international co-operation” not “international competition”

Addendum to Lévis IHCF 2012 declaration

Lévis, October 13, 2012

The Board of the International Health Cooperative Organization in their meeting held last Saturday, October 13th in Lèvis city, Canada approved to fully endorse the declaration of the International Health Forum celebrated in this city and would like to add and highlight the important contribution of health cooperatives in health care coverage and the influence on the determinants of health throughout the world.

At the same time, health cooperatives have contributed in the overwhelming problems regarding cost-containment to be able to support high quality standards of health in all countries and regions and will pursue in this task trying to work together – “cooperate” in its real significance- with any institution with the same objectives trying to look for a better health for and with our fellow citizens.

Declaración de Lévis – download in Spanish

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