WHO’s three messages for UN75

<p>As the world comes together at an unprecedented virtual session of the 75<sup>th</sup>&nbsp;UN General Assembly (UNGA), WHO has three messages to share.&nbsp;<br /></p><p><strong>The first is about equitable access to COVID-19 tools.</strong>&nbsp;At UNGA, WHO will call on world leaders to support the Access to COVID-19 Tools (ACT)-Accelerator, a unique international collaboration to fast-track the development, production and equitable access to COVID-19 tests, treatments, and vaccines globally, while strengthening health systems.&nbsp;<br /></p><p>Pooling investments globally, the ACT-Accelerator provides a chance for all countries to access a greater number of tools more quickly, sharing the risks and costs together.<br /></p><p>The ACT-Accelerator needs US$35 billion to fast-track the development, procurement and distribution of 2 billion vaccine doses, 245 million treatments and 500 million tests over the next year.&nbsp;<br /></p><p>The investment needed in a global solution aimed at equitable access pales in comparison to the economic impacts of COVID-19 and the domestic stimulus packages designed to keep economies afloat.&nbsp;<br /></p><p>Equitable access enables all countries to achieve full recovery by supporting all economic sectors, protecting the global value chain, and securing long-term global growth.&nbsp;<br /></p><p><strong>The second message is about maintaining the momentum towards achieving the sustainable development goals.</strong>&nbsp;The pandemic risks unravelling decades of gains made in health and development.&nbsp;<br /></p><p><a rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank" data-auth="NotApplicable" href="https://www.who.int/news-room/detail/31-08-2020-in-who-global-pulse-survey-90-of-countries-report-disruptions-to-essential-health-services-since-covid-19-pandemic">According to a recent WHO survey</a>, 90% of countries are experiencing disruptions to essential health services due to the pandemic.&nbsp;The most frequently disrupted areas reported include routine immunization, non-communicable diseases diagnosis and treatment, family planning and contraception, treatment for mental health disorders, and cancer diagnosis and treatment.<br /></p><p>COVID-19 offers a stark reminder of why we need to invest in stronger health and data systems, rooted in primary healthcare, to achieve universal health coverage and to meet the health-related targets of the SDGs.<br /></p><p>The Global Action Plan for Healthy Lives and Well-being for All (GAP) works to accelerate country progress on the health-related targets of the SDGs, with the support of 12 multilateral agencies engaged in health, development and humanitarian response. This week we&rsquo;ll learn about the progress made in laying the groundwork for a decade of delivery and action.<br /></p><p><strong>Finally, we must prepare for the next pandemic together, now.&nbsp;</strong>COVID-19 has shown us that the world was woefully unprepared &ndash; despite the many warning signs and warnings.&nbsp;<br /></p><p>A year ago at UNGA, the independent Global Preparedness Monitoring Board (GPMB) warned of the threat of a pandemic, calling for global leaders to take urgent, united action to prepare.&nbsp;<br /></p><p>Earlier this week, the GPMB issued its 2020 report &ldquo;World in disorder&rdquo;. The report looks at a world disorientated by COVID-19, suffering from a lack of leadership and timely action. It calls for a renewed commitment to multilateralism and to WHO.&nbsp;&nbsp;<br /></p><p>At UNGA, WHO will call on all citizens and leaders to support the five actions outlined in the GPMB 2020 report: responsible leadership; engaged citizenship; strong and agile systems for health security; sustained investment and robust global governance of preparedness.&nbsp;&nbsp;<br /></p><p>Our actions today will define our collective future.&nbsp;</p><p>&nbsp;</p>