COPASAH Global Symposium 2019 on Citizenship Governance Accountability in Health

Leaving No One Behind: Strengthening Community Centred Health Systems for Achieving Sustainable Development Goals

15-18 October, 2019 – India Habitat Centre, New-Delhi, India

Community of Practitioners on Accountability and Social Action in Health (COPASAH) in collaboration with its alliances for social accountability and human rights for the health, well- being and dignity of the marginalised is organizing a COPASAH Global Symposium (CoPGS) 2019 on Citizenship, Governance and Accountability in Health from October 15-18, 2019 in New-Delhi, India.  COPASAH is a global community of practitioners who came together in 2011 to learn and share from each other on community led practices around accountability and health governance. In the last few years Accountability and Governance is being increasingly seen as essential to the fulfillment of the Universal Health Care and Sustainable Development Goal agenda. Members of COPASAH are among the leading practitioners of social accountability and community action in the field of Health and as a group have contributed significantly to the emerging discussions on community-centred and citizen-led processes in the field of health. The COPGS 2019 aims to

The theme of the COPGS 2019 is Leaving No One Behind: Strengthening Community Centred Health Systems for Achieving Sustainable Development Goals. It aims to strengthen the solidarity within the community of practitioners, facilitate conversations between practitioners and other key actors like researchers and development agencies and overall stimulate learning which is driven from practice in the field. It will bring together 500 practitioners from diverse social – cultural contexts including COPASAH members from Latin America, Eastern Europe, Sub Saharan African, Eastern and Southern Asia.

The co-organisers  for the Symposium are  People’s Health MovementAzim Premji University – Bengaluru (India)Accountability Research Centre – American University – Washington DC (USA), Institute of Development Studies – Sussex (UK), Global Health Justice and Governance Programme – Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University New York (USA).

Through the global symposium, COPASAH will deliberate on a set of broad sub-themes which include:

  • Community action in governance and accountability for health systems strengthening: Through the themes the Symposium attempts to position communities and civil society at large as central to the governance and accountability of health systems (both public and private). It emphasises on community empowerment and transformation of the iniquitous power relations between the community and health systems.
  • Improving access to quality health services for the indigenous, excluded, vulnerable communities and those in fragile contexts: Several indigenous, vulnerable and marginalised communities, and those in fragile contexts such as those affected by conflict, displacement or natural disasters face exclusion and discrimination from the policies, programme and health care services. The modalities of exclusion, non-inclusiveness and discrimination are reflected in the health care programmes and policies that are designed and the kind of health care that is made available.
  • Moving forward the agenda for Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights: Sexual and Reproductive health rights are indivisible aspects of human rights, and deeply linked with the fulfilment of all other civil, political, economic, and social rights. Social action for accountability towards sexual and reproductive health rights is gaining momentum; however, it continues to be challenged by marginalisation and repercussions on the basis of gender, caste, disability, and sexuality.
  • Setting the framework and agenda for people centred accountability of private and corporate health care sectors: In an environment where private providers are largely unregulated, and hence are unaccountable either to the citizens or to the government, the accountability deficit continues to deepen, creating significant challenges for patient’s access to quality and affordable care, and preventing redressal of grievances from such powerful institutions. There is a growing demand for ensuring social accountability of the private health care sector, and developing accountable regulatory frameworks to achieve this.
  • Forging alliances between the community and the health care workers: Frontline health care workers – traditional birth attendants, community health workers (CHW), nurses and midwives the foundational building blocks of the health care systems. More often than not, communities and health care workers are made to relate to each other in hostility and antagonism, instead of solidarity, and such fragmentation cumulatively affects the rights of both the communities and health care workers.

The call for participation cum scholarship for the COPASAH Global Symposium is open till February 15, 2019- 5.00pm IST. The application for participation cum scholarship form is available in five different languages including English, Hindi, French, Spanish and Romani.  For more details and updates on the COPASAH Global Symposium 2019 please visit the Symposium website

Queries regarding the Symposium can be sent to

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