10 September 2020 | News
The Member countries agreed to continuing and expanding multi-sectoral collaboration
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To fight against COVID-19 with better-equipped health systems & deliver essential health services, all member countries of the WHO South-East Asia region have collectively signed a declaration to resolve the issue.
The declaration was signed at the end of a ministerial round table on the second and last day of the Seventy-third Regional Committee Session, hosted by Thailand, and held virtually for the first time ever due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
All countries agreed to the importance of universal health coverage and primary health care as a safety net for people to access quality health services - both COVID-19 and other essential services, including the most vulnerable population.
The Member countries agreed to the allocation of adequate budgets to ensure uninterrupted services during and beyond the pandemic, while prioritizing the health of the people. Member countries pledged to ensure occupational health, safety and wellbeing of health professionals and other related workers.
The declaration also calls for strengthening the safety of patients and the people through adequate public health and social measures and access to quality personal protective devices.
The Member countries agreed to continuing and expanding multi-sectoral collaboration; strengthening regional collaboration for scaling up capacities for preparedness, surveillance and rapid response, field epidemiology training, supply chain management of medicines and medical supplies, and regional stockpiling of essential health resources. They also resolved to identify gaps and strengthen core capacities as required by the International Health Regulations 2005.
All countries in the Region agreed to fully engage in the global discussion on equitable allocation of vaccines, medicines and diagnostics for COVID-19.