«Health cooperatives are an international reality»


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«Health cooperatives are an international reality»

The President of the International Health Cooperative Organisation (IHCO) and Director-General of the Espriu Foundation, Carlos Zarco, took part at the International Cooperative Forum held in Moscow to analyse the role of cooperatives in providing healthcare services in Russia.

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The Federation of Consumer Cooperatives of Russia, Centrosoyuz, staged the International Cooperative Forum between 18 and 22 September with the main aim of raising the profile of the cooperative enterprise model and increasing awareness of its contribution to global socio-economic development.

Held in the Kaluga district in south-west Moscow, the gathering brought together cooperative members from various regions of Russia, representatives of the International Cooperative Alliance and senior regional and federal government figures from the host country.

The Espriu Foundation's Director General, who took part in an international panel debate alongside the President of Centrosoyuz, Dmitry Zubov, explained the different operational areas and organisational models that health cooperatives adopt in many different countries to provide the public with quality healthcare and a beneficial working environment for medical professionals.

According to figures published by the IHCO, some 100 million households worldwide enjoy access to medical care thanks to cooperatives. "The presence of this enterprise model has been confirmed in the health systems of 76 countries, with over 3,300 health cooperatives being recorded, amassing an overall turnover of 15 billion dollars," Dr Zarco asserted in his address.

Centrosoyuz is the highest representative body of Russia's cooperatives, dating back 186 years and now covering more than 2,600 cooperative enterprises, mainly in the agri-food sector, but also including the fields of health, education and scientific research.

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