Iran calls for enhanced regional cooperation against COVID-19

August 12, 2020 - 19:3

TEHRAN – The health program of the Mediterranean countries, in which Iran, Iraq, Pakistan, and Afghanistan work together under the auspices of the World Health Organization (WHO), should be expanded in the region, especially in the fight against coronavirus, Health Minister Saeed Namaki has stated.

Namaki made the remarks during a virtual meeting with Ahmed Al-Mandhari WHO Regional Director for the Eastern Mediterranean and the health ministers of the member countries on Tuesday with the focus on responding to COVID-19.

He further suggested holding a special virtual meeting to obtain the approval of the health ministers of the countries in the region to delegate responsibilities for the implementation of the proposed plan to combat the pandemic.

The proposed plan can be presented in four main areas, including awareness of risks and social participation, infection prevention and control, universal health coverage and primary health care, governance, and health security, he explained.

He went on to highlight that implementing such an initiative to respond to COVID-19 will be possible through continuous, active and committed joint communication and follow-up.

Emphasizing that this cooperation should lead to strengthening COVID-19 response, readiness, and accountability, he expressed hope that this cooperation would lead to the establishment of primary health care and the active participation of the community in cross-sectoral cooperation and global access to essential health services.

Given the multidimensional response to the pandemic, I urge the Eastern Mediterranean Regional Office to coordinate the executive programs with the UN Resident Coordinator, relevant UN agencies such as UNICEF, the United Nations Population Fund, and the United Nations AIDS Program, UNHCR and the WFP, he stated.

Finally, I urge the Regional Director of the WHO to present the results of this initiative at the 67th Regional Committee Meeting to be held in October 2020, he concluded.

The number of people diagnosed with coronavirus in Iran reached 333,699 on Wednesday, of whom 18,988 have died and 290,244 recovered so far. Over the past 24 hours, 2,510 new cases of people having the virus have been identified, and 188 died, Lari said.

Currently, 3,940 patients with coronavirus are in critical condition, she added.

FB/MG

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