Multistakeholder Pledge: National Health System Inclusion

Key outcome

Foster sustainable and equitable access to health care and related services at affordable costs through strengthened national health systems for all refugees and host communities.

Pledge description

Achieving inclusion in national health systems: Support to national health systems to facilitate inclusion of all refugees, other forcibly displaced and stateless people through policy changes to advance on inclusion, supported by financial, material and capacity strengthening, to foster equitable access to quality health services for refugees and host communities.

Commitments related to this multistakeholder pledge may include:

  • Law & policy. Changes in national legislative frameworks such as health laws and national health policies as well as the inclusion of refugees into national social health protection schemes, including into non-contributory systems. Pledges will focus on the different dimensions of health and health services, including preventive, promotive, curative, rehabilitative and palliative care, and may also link with inclusion of refugees with disabilities into national systems. Pledges will also include elements of health system preparedness and response to support States and non-state actors in preparing for future displacements, disease outbreaks and other public health risks.
  • Programmes. Financial support for sustainable inclusion in health system and social health protection schemes; technical support to enable policy change; capacity building of personnel and volunteers; support to health service delivery in refugee hosting areas through infrastructure adjustments, human resources, medical products and technology; fostering work opportunities for accredited refugee health care providers; community engagement and mobilisation in health actions; expanding the use of mobile technologies for telemedicine. Linked measures to overcome barriers related to language and culture to access healthcare at local level and make services culturally relevant. Work in settings outside formal healthcare settings, such as leveraging school settings to deliver health services and strengthening referral pathways between service providers who provide child-critical services. Support measures to overcome barriers for accessing health services and systems, including for refugees with disabilities.
  • Data & evidence. To support evidence-informed planning, programming, monitoring and inclusive law and policy making through the provision of tools, expertise, and data disaggregated by age and gender to advance measurement and build the evidence-base related to refugees’ inclusion in national health systems and improved health outcomes for refugees and the communities hosting them.

It is expected that new and existing policies will be pre-matched by donors, international financial institutions, international organisations, UN, NGOs, academia and private sector with financial, technical or material support.


Addressing the health of refugees, other forcibly displaced and stateless people has never been so important. More people than ever are forcibly displaced, and global health challenges are increasing as witnessed by the COVID-19 pandemic. The situation is becoming more complex as conflicts persist and climate change impacts health and disease patterns. Good mental health is critical for every person to cope with the stresses of life, to realize their abilities, to learn well and work well, and to contribute to their communities.

Nevertheless, refugees, other forcibly displaced and stateless people often face inadequate access to and do not adequately benefit from culturally appropriate health services. Attending to their health and mental health needs is essential for their physical, social and mental well-being during all stages of life.

WHO and UNHCR jointly launched the Group of Friends of Health for Refugees and Host Communities in May 2023 comprised of States, refugees, private sector partners, NGOs, academia and international organisations to achieve sustainable inclusion into national health systems, to strengthen national health services and to systematically include mental health and psychosocial support (MHPSS) actions in the response to achieve lasting change for refugees and host communities alike.

The Group of Friends Health has dedicated workstreams to advance the inclusion of refugees in national health systems and mental health and psychosocial support.

Related pledges to match

GRF-00417 - Promover la cobertura de aseguramiento a flujos migratorios laborales ordenados del 100% de los casos de refugiados y so.

GRF-00456 - Government of Djibouti - Improve investments in healthcare services by strengthening health facilities at all levels (I, II and III) in refugee hosting areas. Find out more about matching this pledge.

GRF-00473 - Government of Egypt - Assistance/health, w universal coverage for all, adopting a National Law and bylaws stipulating access to health within existing coverage systems Find out more about matching this pledge.

GRF-00480 - Government of El Salvador - Improving health care services for internally displaced persons, deported persons in need of protection, refugees and asylum seekers Find out more about matching this pledge.

GRF-00571 - Government of Ghana - Every child enjoys free education up to senior high school. Primary health care and UHC for all, including refugees. Find out more about matching this pledge.

GRF-00501 - Government of Kenya - Inclusion of refugees in County Development Plans and area-based approaches to building resilience by mitigating the impact of protracted displacement on host communities and preparing refugees for solutions Find out more about matching this pledge.

GRF-00536 - Government of Lebanon - Reaffirmation of Commitments expressed by the Government of Lebanon at the Brussels Conferences on supporting the Future of Syria and the Region, and the joint monitoring framework for implementation Find out more about matching this pledge.

GRF-00616 - Government of Malawi - Inclusion in National Development Agenda Find out more about matching this pledge.

GRF-00664 - Government of Mauritania - Ensure the inclusion of refugees in health services under the same conditions as nationals Find out more about matching this pledge.

GRF-00702 - Government of Mozambique - pledges to continue the local integration practice, aiming at stronger synergies between refugees and host communities, and increase access to education, health and basic services for refugees and host communities by 2023. Find out more about matching this pledge.

GRF-00705 - Government of Namibia - The Government supports the Osire clinic that serves refugees, including deployment of medical staff, medical equipment, medicines, etc; the government also supports access to wrk permits by refugee medical professionals to serve in government and private hospitals.

GRF-00778 - Government of Nigeria - Nigeria pledges to ensure the availability and access to durable solutions for refugees and IDPs Find out more about matching this pledge.

GRF-00749 - Government of Sudan - Integrate health services for refugees in National Health System in a gradual manner Find out more about matching this pledge.

GRF-01017 - Government of Uganda - Promote access, quality, and inclusiveness of national health services for refugees and host communities Find out more about matching this pledge.


  • WHO
  • Kingdom of Morocco
  • Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria
  • GAVI

Supported by UNHCR

Contact details


  • 22 March 2024 - Group of Friends of Health for Refugees and Host Communities meeting

Contributions towards this multi-stakeholder pledge