NEWS

No One Is Safe Until Everyone Is Safe: Dr Waqainabete

Fiji has a long, tough road ahead, together with the assistance of the global community, the WHO and our development partners, Fiji will get through it.
27 May 2021 11:53
No One Is Safe Until Everyone Is Safe: Dr Waqainabete
Minister-for-Health-and-Medical-Services-Hon.-Dr-Ifereimi-Waqainabete-and-his-team-during-the-WHA-74th-virtual-session.

Fiji is calling on the international community to support COVAX and access to COVID-19 Tools (ACT) accelerator to work and be fully supported.

While delivering Fiji’s statement at the 74th Session of the World Health Assembly (WHA) held via virtual platform yesterday, Minister for Health and Medical Services, Dr. Ifereimi Waqainabete reflected on the impact of the pandemic globally, and particularly for Pacific Small Island Developing States, and the greater need to work in solidarity. Adding further that “No one is safe until everyone is safe.”

Dr. Waqainabete acknowledged the efforts led by the World Health Organization (WHO) to address global health issues, and he reaffirmed Fiji’s commitment to working with the WHO to advance shared aspirations and priorities.

The Assembly was informed of Fiji’s current fight against the COVID-19 pandemic and cohesive response measures undertaken to contain the COVID-19 cases.

Dr. Waqainabete said that although Fiji has a long, tough road ahead, together with the assistance of the global community, the WHO and our development partners, Fiji will get through it.

“For Small Island Developing States, our unique vulnerabilities are severely impacted by the pandemic; we are battling both the pandemic and the climate crisis. Ensuring Universal Health Coverage remains both a priority and a challenge given our limited resources and fragile infrastructure. Our health systems are stretched to capacity, in dealing with prevalent chronic diseases, and diseases arising from climate induced natural disasters.”

Dr. Waqainabete highlighted the need for a clean and resilient global recovery is necessary for the long-term success of our public health, economies, and the natural environment. And ending the pandemic means considering the unique vulnerabilities of developing countries by addressing socio-economic challenges, financial, institutional and systemic challenges.

Fiji’s Health Minister added that full recovery is dependent on the opening of international borders and normalisation of the global supply chain.

“This in turn is dependent on the progress of vaccination across the globe. SIDS cannot remain at the backend of the vaccine, diagnostics, and therapeutics cue.”

WHO Director General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus officiated the WHA74 which, is held from 24 May to 1 June 2021, in light of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. This year’s WHA is focused on the theme, “Ending this pandemic, preventing the next: building together a healthier, safer and fairer world.”



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