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Pakistan to draw world’s attention towards pandemics: caretaker minister

By M Waqar Bhatti
January 04, 2024

ISLAMABAD: Global health security summit being organised by Pakistan this month is aimed at drawing world’s attention towards future pandemics and at strengthening collective ability to prevent, detect, and respond to infectious disease threats like Covid-19, the caretaker federal health minister said on Wednesday.

Caretaker Federal health minister Dr Nadeem Jan can be seen in this image.—APP/File
Caretaker Federal health minister Dr Nadeem Jan can be seen in this image.—APP/File

“After Covid-19 threat was over and WHO declared that it was no longer a public health emergency, entire world put the global health security on back burner. But we in Pakistan strongly believe that being chair of the Global Health Security Agenda, there is an urgent need to discuss issues concerning global health security and take timely actions to prevent and deal future pandemics,” Dr. Nadeem Jan told a group of journalists at the Ministry of Health.

Being held in Islamabad on January 10 and 11, the Global Health Security Summit would serve as a great opportunity of bringing together, international and national experts in the concerned field and learning by sharing of expertise and knowledge for a safer world, Dr Jan maintained.

He said that the strategic objectives of the conference were to collaborate with global leaders in order to ensure equity-based pandemic preparedness financing for low and middle-income countries and mutual exchange of knowledge and rich experience with member states and experts around summit thematic areas which focuses on vaccine equity, patent deregulation and transfer of technology.

The interim minister said that the conference would secure global and regional partnership with international organisations for aligning its health security priorities with those of global and regional priorities, in order to strengthen its core capacities through technical assistance.

He said the summit would explore opportunities of joint working and pool funding for health security, across the region and globe in addition to the sustainable domestic funding for its five-year health security plan 2024-28.

He further said that the summit would be attended by top health experts from around the world. He added an integrated strategy to deal with epidemics would be formed at the global conference.

Dr Jan said that by holding the international conference, the positive image of Pakistan would be presented. He said that holding the summit was a proof that Pakistan could play a key role in the health sector. He said that the purpose of the summit was to make Pakistan and the world safe from diseases.

The caretaker health minister said that at the summit, an action plan would be decided to strengthen the health systems of poor countries.

He said that at the end of two days’ deliberations, a future global health security charter would be signed to build up a narrative for equity based pandemic treaty based on equity based global financing facility on the mutually agreed upon “Islamabad declaration” for making health systems resilient enough to showcase health security by putting up a coordinated “One Health response” to any threat and becoming advocates and champions of the conference in participating member states.