A healthy population is a pre–requisite for the sustainable human development and increased productivity in a country. SADC recognises that close co-operation in the area of health is essential for the effective control of communicable and non-communicable diseases for addressing common concerns within the region.
To this end, SADC Member States signed the Protocol on Health on the 18th of August 1999 to coordinate regional efforts on epidemic preparedness, mapping prevention, control and where possible the eradication of communicable and non- communicable diseases. Education and training, efficient laboratory services and common strategies to address the health needs of women, children and vulnerable groups are discussed within the Protocol.
The Protocol encourages the establishment of institutional mechanisms within the health sector of the region to effectively implement the Protocol.