WHO assessing impact of possible funding withdrawal on its work

—following threat by US President

DPI, Guyana, Wednesday, April 15, 2020

 The World Health Organization (WHO) is reviewing the possible impact on its work following the threat of the withdrawal of funding by the United States (US).

Director-General, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said the WHO regrets the decision of the US President Donald Trump to order a halt in funding, noting that the US has been a “longstanding and generous friend to the organization.”

Director General, World Health Organisation, Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus

He emphasised that they were committed to “public health, science and to serving all the people of the world without fear or favour” and would continue to “work with all nations equally, without regard to the size of their populations or economies.”

“When we are divided, the virus exploits the cracks between us. We are committed to serving the world’s people, and to accountability for the resources with which we are entrusted,” the Director-General stated.

“Our focus, my focus, is on stopping this virus and saving lives,” he added, noting that the WHO would work with its partners to fill any financial gaps to ensure its work continued uninterrupted.

He highlighted some of the organisation’s work in tackling the pandemic.

  • Over 1.5 million enrolments in WHO’s online courses through OpenWHO.org. The forthcoming launch of a new course for health workers on personal protective equipment.
  • More than 90 countries have joined or have expressed interest in joining the Solidarity Trial, and more than 900 patients are enrolled, to evaluate the safety and efficacy of four drugs and drug combinations.
  • Clinical trials for three vaccines have already begun, more than 70 others are in development, and the WHO is collaborating with partners to accelerate the development, production and distribution of vaccines.
  • In addition to the Solidarity Trial, WHO has convened groups of clinicians to look at the impact of corticosteroids and other anti-inflammatory drugs on treatment outcomes.
  • Specifically, the organisation is looking at oxygen use and ventilation strategies in patients. Any intervention that reduces the need for ventilation and improves outcomes for critically ill patients is important – especially in low-resource settings, to save lives.
  • On April 14, the first United Nations Solidarity Flight transported personal protective equipment, ventilators and lab supplies to many countries across Africa. The Solidarity Flight is part of a massive effort to ship medical supplies to 95 countries across the globe.

On April 18 some of the biggest names in music are coming together for the One World: Together at Home concert, to generate further funds for the Solidarity Response Fund.

 

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