Dr Harsh Vardhan completes tenure as WHO Executive Board Chairperson

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Union Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan addressing the 149th session of WHO Executive Board. (Photo/ANI)
Union Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan addressing the 149th session of WHO Executive Board. (Photo/ANI)

New Delhi [India], June 2 (ANI): Union Minister for Health and Family Welfare, Dr. Harsh Vardhan on Wednesday successfully completed his tenure as the Chairperson of Executive Board of World Health Organization.

On the last day of his tenure serving as the Chairperson, Executive Board, WHO, he addressed the 149th Session Of the WHO Executive Board Meeting from Nirman Bhawan through a video conference.

He applauded the efforts of the World Health Organisation (WHO) by countering the endless false narratives circulating across media channels on the ongoing pandemic in the country.

"Healthcare workers across the world are working long hours in hospitals, sleeping in their basements or hotels so they do not infect family members. Scientists are working overtime to develop new vaccines and treatments; you are all countering the endless false narratives circulating across media channels and doctors are reopening medical practice so we can meet the postponed health needs of our patients. In the middle of all this, lakhs of healthcare and frontline workers have been lost forever."

"It is up to us, at the WHO - an organisation that the world revers - to demonstrate how to understand more, to be the voice our members can trust in this time of trial and tribulation and to lead on action to move us forward in this difficult, perilous time," he added.

He praised the healthworkers for their resilience and determination to serve the society during this toughest period.

As the Chair of the WHO Executive Board, he thanked all the members and appreciated the support of all Vice-Chairpersons, the Director General Dr Tedros, all Regional Directors, especially the South East Asia region Director Dr Poonam Khetrapal Singh, in the successful conduct of the Executive Board sessions.

He also said earlier today: "..The biggest challenge before us is the equitable distribution of vaccines. I believe that we at WHO must all rise to the occasion to serve the powerless and the voiceless, to see hope in these darkest of hours. This is one chance to forge open collaborations and reaffirm that fundamental truth that the world is one," he added.

Commending the WHO for its steadfast support to all member states throughout the pandemic, he said that the access to COVID-19 Tools Acceleration is the fastest most coordinated and successful collaboration in history to accelerate the development, production and equitable access to COVID-19 tests, treatments and vaccines.

Dr Patrick Patrick Amoth, Acting Director-General for Health, Ministry of Health of Kenya has been appointed as the Chair of WHO Executive Board to replace Harsh Vardhan. (ANI)