Lyonpo Tandin Wangchuk, Hon’ble Health Minister addressed the plenary of the 68th World Health Assembly (WHA) on 20th May 2015. The WHA is attended by Hon’ble Lyonpo and senior Officials from the Ministry of Health along with Hon’ble Kutshab and Officials from the Permanent Mission of Bhutan in Geneva.
In his statement, Lyonpo highlighted that the public driven health system framework has been the hallmark of our strength and resilience. In line with the theme of the 68th World Health Assembly-building resilient health system, challenges related to health workforce status, vulnerability to shortages of medical supplies and weak information and disease surveillance systems were mentioned. Lyonpo highlighted Bhutan’s vulnerability to natural and climate-induced disasters and urged for health systems strengthening and global health solidarity.
Full script of the statement is available in the Ministry of Health Website (www.health.gov.bt)
On sidelines of the Assembly, Hon’ble Minister had bilateral meetings with Heads of Delegation of Thailand, India, Nepal, Sri Lanka, New Zealand, Norway and Australia. Areas of mutual interests in health development and the upcoming Bhutan Health Trust Fund event were discussed. Lyonpo also had meetings with representative of Partnership for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health (PMNCH) and international Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) where topics relevant to Bhutan and future collaboration in the areas health were discussed.
As side event to the 68th World Health Assembly, Lyonpo addressed a special session on Water and Sanitation in Healthcare Facilities organized by the World Health Organisation and WaterAid. In his presentation, he discussed the recent assessment on water, sanitation and hygiene in health care facilities in Bhutan.