Dr Harsh Vardhan, Union Minister for Health & Family Welfare :
- Participated in an exhaustive & highly informative virtual meeting of ‘Health Ministers of Shanghai Cooperation Organization’ regarding best practices being followed by SCO Member States to prevent spread of COVID19. The meet was organised by the Russian Federation in Moscow.
- Expressing my deepest condolences at the loss of lives across the world due to COVID19, I enlightened distinguished members of SCO on PM Narendramodi Ji’s pre-emptive & pro-active approach taken and the highest level of political commitment to fight COVID19.
- On preparedness to fight COVID19, I informed SCO members that India started taking measures much before @WHO’s declaration of ‘Public Health Emergency of Int Concern’. I said that India’s recovery rate stands at 63.4% whereas mortality is lowest among the world at 2.3%.
- At the SCO meeting to help decelerate COVID19 transmission & adopt each other’s best practices, I said India has made 3 strategic moves – stringent nationwide lockdowns, scaling up tech knowhow & infrastructure and promoting pharma & non-pharma interventions.
- Speaking on how India has developed domestic capacity from no single manufacturing of PPE kit to the extent of capability to export PPEs, I underlined India’s use of information technology in almost every aspect of COVID management.
- Talking about the public health research agenda for COVID to have an affordable vaccine in the near future, I said that Indian pharma and biotechnology industries are also geared up for manufacturing drugs and diagnostics.
- I proposed a new Sub Group on Traditional Medicine that shall provide an institutional mechanism within SCO to discuss co-op in this area. This will also fulfil the @WHO Traditional Medicine Strategy 2014-23 & help implement Qingdao Summit Jt Statement on combating epidemics
- I concluded with an appeal to all SCO members to work together in this hour of crisis and underlined efforts of medical & non-medical personnel in the fight against COVID19. I said our frontline health workers are no less than God.