Health for All by the Year 2000: Can Pakistan Meet the Target?

S. Akbar Zaidi


Since the late 1970s, the "Primary Health Care" (PHC) approach
in order to deliver "Health for All by the Year 2000" (HFA/2000), has
been in vogue in all the underdeveloped countries (UOCs) of the world.
Nearly all the developed and underdeveloped countries endorsed the
proposals set out by the World Health Organization (WHO) at its
Conference in Alma Ata in 1978 (WHO 1978). The signing of the Alma Ata
Charter supposedly signalled the beginning of a new era which would deal
with the problems of health and disease of the great majority of the
individuals of planet Earth. Pakistan was also one of the signatories of
the Alma Ata Charter and has since the signing, been in the forefront of
the movement. Pakistan has become a spokesman for the PHC and HF A/2000
approaches at nearly all international seminars and conferences, and
those who rule and can implement policies within the country, have
continued giving both the policies active oral support. The Primary
Health Care approach is, at least on paper, a fairly radical approach
which sets out to deal with much more than the simple problems of the
health of the poor of the world. It encompasses a very wide canvas, and
issues, which apparently are not related directly to health care, also
fall under its terms of reference. It is the purpose of this paper to
see whether Pakistan can reach the goals of Health for All by the Year
2000, using the Primary Health Care approach, a goal to which it has
committed itself totally.

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