Talking so you're heard - making the case for investment in health

Thursday, 4 October 2018 | 14.15-15.30 | Kursaal A

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2018 marks the 10th anniversary of The Tallinn Charter: Health Systems for Health and Wealth. In celebration of this, the Thursday Plenary will explore how to better articulate the value that health creates by discussing the synergies and co-benefits of health and economic interests. Changing mindsets and reframing health advocacy within government spending decisions are key to securing investment in health and strengthening and improving the long-term outlook of health systems in Europe and beyond. More specifically, we need to better understand the dialogue between health and finance decision-makers, and to ask how it can be improved. For while both agree that health carries a value in its own right and even that the health system can be a driver of health and economic growth, why do finance decision-makers often talk about the health system as a ‘black hole’ or one characterised by high levels of waste? What can health officials do to counter these accusations, and to dispel the all too common misconception that health systems are an unproductive sector of the economy with little tangible return on investment? Is better or different evidence needed? Or are different communication tools and approaches required? And can health ministry objectives be better married with those of their finance colleagues, such as around the broader economic and fiscal questions the latter are concerned with? Involving senior officials from both the health and finance sides of the discussion, this session aims to promote a better alignment of interests and closer dialogue to support more and better investment in health and health systems.

Policy brief on investing in health systems: Link

Session recording

Speakers & panellists


“An additional funding request”, featuring GEERT VAN MAANEN, former Secretary General of the Ministry of Finance and subsequently of the Ministry of Health, Netherlands

Introduction and Presentation of Tallinn Results

HANS KLUGE, Director of the Division of Health Systems and Public Health, WHO Europe

Finance Perspectives

WILHELM MOLTERER, Managing Director, European Fund for Strategic Investments

MARTTI HETEMÄKI, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Finance, Finland

Health Perspectives

JENNIFER DIXON, Chief Executive, Health Foundation

CORINA SILVIA POP, State Secretary for Health, Ministry of Health, Romania

Closing Comments

ZSUZSANNA JAKAB, Regional Director, WHO Europe


JOSEP FIGUERAS, Director, European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies

Newsroom Team

MATTHIAS WISMAR, Senior Health Policy Analyst, European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies

DIMITRA PANTELI, Research Assistant, Technical University of Berlin



IN PARTNERSHIP WITH WHO Regional Office for Europe and European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies

Available Biographical Information

NameKluge, Hans Henri P.
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NameJakab, Zsuzsanna
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NameFigueras, Josep
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NameWismar, Matthias
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NamePanteli, Dimitra
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NameOudshoorn, Floris
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NamePop, Corina Silvia
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NameHetemäki, Martti
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NameMolterer, Wilhem
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