Tokyo declaration

“No one left behind”

No Woman, Child, Family, Society Left Behind through the MCH Handbook Leaders for a New Development Era from thirty-eight countries and areas from all over the world, meeting at the 10th International Conference on the Maternal and Child Health Handbook in Tokyo from 23rd to 25th of November 2016, have come at a critical and strategic moment in the initiative of the MCH Handbook as a new global standard tool to promise essential and effective health services to ensure that “No Woman, Child, Family, Society Left Behind”.

“No one left behind” is an ethical imperative of new development agenda in the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in September 2015. We are required to make harmonized efforts on achieving goals to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity by 2030.

We recognize and applaud that “Promoting resilient health systems for quality of life” has been daintified as one of the three pillars in the Nairobi Declaration adopted at the TICAD VI Summit in August 2016.

The MCH Handbook is a comprehensive tool designed to be kept by the family that may contain on and off-line health records and information on pregnancy, delivery and child health. It was first established in Japan in 1948. After nearly 70 years since its commencement, 39 countries and areas over the world have developed and use it as a unique and essential measure to address the continuum of care for maternal, neonatal, child and adolescent health. This unique endeavor accommodates people-centered approach to realize the Human Security Agenda, which the Government of Japan strongly committed in this Conference as well as other important conferences such as G7 Ise-shima Summit.

The conference has provided an opportunity followed by the Yaounde Declaration adopted by the 9th International Conference of the MHC Handbook in Cameroon in September 2015 to reflect on what has been learned about effective development and implementation, to re-examine the values and effects of the use of the MCH handbook, and to identify the directions and strategies to promote Universal Health Coverage in the 21st century.

Finally, all the participants of the 10th International Conference on MCH Handbook hereby conclude and recommend that:

  1. The MCH Handbook is a global standard tool to improve maternal, neonatal, child and adolescent health to accelerate achieving Universal Health Coverage in the progressive agenda of Sustainable Development Goals.
  2. The MCH Handbook strengthens health systems at all levels, from the household through community to the highest national level, including public, NGOs and private sectors.
  3. The MCH Handbook promotes Continuum of Care through the life-course, especially to cover the first important 1000 days of life of a child through the service integration and program coordination in an effective and efficient manner.
  4. The MCH Handbook enhances health information and data sharing between the health professionals and the parents, and among family and kinship members, to ensure seamless health services and reciprocal communication.
  5. The MCH Handbook is a symbolic instrument to enhance bonding between the parents and their children, as well as promoting a global citizen’s movement towards social cohesion and equity.
  6. The digitization of the MCH Handbook opens up limitless innovations to strengthen maternal, neonatal, child and adolescent health through technological advancement and market opportunities.
  7. The MCH Handbook should be developed in partnership with its end-users and related stakeholders.
  8. The MCH Handbook promotes social inclusion of the poor and the marginalized including people with disabilities, refugees, migrants and ethnic minorities.
  9. The MCH Handbook should meet the emerging demands from specific needs, such as low-birth weight babies, development disorders, public health emergencies and disasters.
  10. The sustainability of the MCH Handbook program demands country ownership with political commitment, financial investment and technological support from the governments and development partners under mutual and regional cooperation and monolithic solidarity. This is high time to advocate more commitments from global partners, UN agencies, International Banks and other stakeholders to consolidate the MCH Handbook as a global standard tool and country implementation.
  11. The MCH Handbook plays pivotal roles and has an enormous potential to empower people to respond to wider and complicated issues in our society today to ensure healthy, happy and prosperous world in the future.

The Tokyo Declaration offers a vision and focus for the innovative, equitable and sustainable

development of maternal, neonatal, child and adolescent health in the SDGs era. It reflects the firm commitment of participants in the Conference to draw upon the widest possible range of resources to promote the MCH Handbook for our world and next generations.

We are one, bound with the ideals of the MCH Handbook, and committed to ensuring “No Woman, Child, Family, Society Left Behind”.

Tokyo, Japan

25th of November, 2016