Ahmed Al-Manzari, Regional Director for the Eastern Mediterranean, revealed, during the 68th session of the WHO Regional Committee, in a statement today, that the basic measures taken over the past two years in addressing the Corona pandemic were a unique example of solidarity and an optimal way of working that should be applied in relation to all priorities. Public Health.
“Together, we have mobilized more resources in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic than any other WHO region,” he said, adding, “We have not yet passed the threat of a pandemic, and our region has already lost nearly 300,000 people, and the delta mutant is spreading widely, and we have before us.” A lot to do in equitably spreading vaccines in all countries but the key message from this year’s Regional Committee is: it’s time to start building back better and more equitably“.
Dr Al-Mandhari expressed concern about other important health priorities, including other noncommunicable diseases that cause premature deaths of millions of people each year, low rates of immunization, and severe climatic and environmental changes, all of which are urgent health challenges facing the Region..
Today, I call on everyone – the World Health Organization, Member States, and partners – to tackle these challenges with the same momentum, innovation, sense of ownership and the collective spirit that we have shown in the fight against Corona.
Al-Mandhari praised the countries of the region for their remarkable resilience, and the progress they have made in addressing the Corona pandemic and other emergencies, and stressed that “with strong commitment, we can find ways to move forward.”“.
We must build on the momentum generated by the pandemic response in order to achieve lasting gains in health security, accelerate progress towards universal health coverage, strengthen our health systems, and prepare resilient societies, he stressed.“.
He explained: “We have learned ways to improve the integration of communicable and noncommunicable disease services into primary health care and other services, especially in emergency situations.“He explained that an overview was given of the review of the mid-term plan to move forward with the vision of the Eastern Mediterranean 2023, highlighting the achievements, lessons learned, challenges, success stories, and identifying specific ways to move forward in implementing the 2023 vision..
The Regional Committee also received an update on the emergency situations in the Region, and the ongoing efforts to implement the recommendations of the global review conducted in this regard. He said that the Region suffers with the highest burden of emergencies in the world, as 15 countries are currently facing emergencies due to conflicts, wars and natural disasters, and a technical paper was discussed on accelerating the pace of preparedness and response to health emergencies in the Region, which received support from Member States to implement its recommendations.