Prime Minister of Barbados Mia Mottley and Ministers of Health across the Americas will attend a meeting hosted by the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) to address the critical health challenges facing the Region of the Americas with the COVID-19 pandemic.
Mottley and Colombia’s President Ivan Duque will open the virtual event which begins today and ends tomorrow, 29 September.
PAHO’s Director Carissa F. Etienne; the Secretary-General of the Organization of American States, Luis Almagro; and the president of the Inter-American Development Bank, Luis Alberto Moreno will also be in attendance at the 58th Directing Council of PAHO.
Discussions will focus mainly on countries’ response to the COVID-19 pandemic and the impact COVID-19 has had on national health systems and services, which will be addressed in-depth on Tuesday.
Implementation of the International Health Regulations (IHR) will also be discussed.
The participants in the Directing Council will also discuss the region’s health achievements from 2014 to 2019, as a review of PAHO’s strategic plan for those years; PAHO finances and programmatic priorities, among other topics.
PAHO’s Director will present her annual report for 2019, focusing on progress made in a range of technical cooperation strategies and actions.
The report also reflects how the COVID-19 pandemic is impacting longstanding health gains of the Region, and these may be placed at risk for the future, including in such areas immunization programs, the resiliency of health systems, and progress made in communicable diseases.
Equally important are areas of emerging importance within the pandemic, such as mental health, non-communicable diseases, and digital health.
Discussions will also focus on the region’s health achievements from 2014 to 2019, as a review of PAHO’s strategic plan for those years; PAHO finances, and programmatic priorities, among other topics.
Costa Rican Minister of Health Daniel Salas and Alex Azar and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary will also participate.
The Director-General of the World Health Organization, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, will deliver a message at the event.
The opening ceremony of the Directing Council will begin at 9:00 am EST (Washington D.C.), and will be broadcast on Livestream.