On 21 May, Ambassador Diego Ruiz Alonso took part in the event in the Ministry of Health and Medical Industry of Turkmenistan.
Dear Minister, Distinguished guests and Colleagues,
It is my pleasure to take part in today’s event on the presentation of the implementation of the National Preparedness and Response Plan of Turkmenistan to acute infectious diseases for 2021 as well as the review of our joint CPRP activities for the year 2021.
The European Union allocated EUR 3 million for the regional project focused on the prevention of the COVID-19 spread in Central Asia with the main focus on Turkmenistan and Kazakhstan. We are glad to see the high level of cooperation from the side of our partners, including WHO and the Ministry of health of Turkmenistan, as well as its agencies, labs, hospitals and all other parties involved.
It is vital to put in maximum effort to stop the spread of COVID-19 and the current global pandemic. The EU regional programme on prevention of COVID-19 spread has been developed, based on the National CPRP. The activities in the Phase 1 and 2of the project were planned and implemented based on WHO EUROPE recommendations, including support by the WHO for the preparations for vaccination against COVID-19, strengthening capacity of clinicians, laboratory specialists, surveillance on the national and regional levels, and the implementation of electronic software of data.
Most of the health-related activities of the CPRP are financed by the EU COVID crisis response project. Our joint efforts contribute to the improvement of the health and wellbeing of the population, to increase the capacity of the health care workers, to strengthen material basis including procurement of medical equipment and medical supplies for hospitals as well as to support the vaccination campaign.
As part of the ongoing activities, the EU and WHO supported the government in strengthening of the sanitary and quarantine supervision of citizens leaving and entering from abroad; in conducting a comprehensive assessment of the work and readiness of all medical institutions in the country; and in ensuring availability of medicines, disinfectants, personal protective equipment and other medical devices and supplies.
PCR studies are conducted by 12 designated laboratories, including the virology laboratory of the Centre for Public Health and Nutrition, which has the status of a National Influenza Centre and is a reference laboratory for conducting diagnostic studies on COVID-19.
For the revised National Preparedness and Response Plan of Turkmenistan to acute infectious diseases for 2021, the EU and WHO will support following activities:
All of what I have mentioned is only a small highlight of the international development cooperation. We are all facing the same challenge, and it seems that the future will be the same with more of challenges.
COVID-19 is a symptom and also a remedy. It is a symptom that the way we use and consume should be changed to prevent future damage to our planet and to our health.
It is a remedy because the pandemic situation showed us that international cooperation is the only way out of this situation. We have to be ready to share our knowledge with our partners, share information and be transparent.
What is good for us, is good for the rest, and what is good for the world is good for us. There is no security or safety in the world if some countries are faster with combating the pandemic and others are left behind.
We have to stay optimistic and learn our lessons from our action. In this regard, the EU is ready to support and fund the global actions to strengthen public health system and find solutions to fight this global challenge which would have a long term positive impact on the economic development and overall prosperity of the country.
Not only will EU support fighting COVID-19, but also promote efforts for restoration of the world and overcoming the negative effects of the pandemic.
In conclusion, I would like to thank representatives of the Ministry of Health and Medical Industry, the Ministry of Foreign affairs, the UN and all International partners for organizing this meeting and bringing us together to discuss this very relevant and urgent subject.