This article was originally published by The Netherlands Society for Tropical Medicine and International Health (NVTG)
Last month, the first-ever Dutch Global Health Strategy (DGHS) was released. Developed jointly by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) and Ministry of Health (MoH), the strategy will be implemented by both ministries and in cooperation with others. While we welcome this collaborative integrated government approach, which we have long argued for, there are several considerations relevant to the actual implementation of the DGHS. In this article, we will begin to unpack the strategy by positioning the policy within a wider context, and looking at its role and significance for our country’s foreign and domestic health policy. We will address the main topics and approaches, and focus on three elements that require greater scrutiny: The support to further privatisation of health services; The role of the Netherlands in ensuring policy coherence for development objectives; and the focus on health security and One Health policies. In the final section, we provide recommendations on how to take this strategy forward, considering good governance and democratic legitimacy.