Enlarge / World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus attends a every day press briefing on COVID-19, the illness brought on by the novel coronavirus, on the WHO headquaters in Geneva on March 11, 2020.
The director-general of the World Health Organization known as for world unity and continued deal with saving lives and combating the widespread enemy, COVID-19, on Wednesday—a day after US President Donald Trump attacked the group for allegedly “severely mismanaging” the pandemic response. Trump introduced he would halt funding to the WHO till his administration revietheyd its response.
The WHO, an company fashioned within the 1940s by the United Nations and supported by its member states, receives round 15 p.c of its funding from the United States.
“We regret the decision of the President of the United States to order a halt in funding to the World Health Organization,” WHO director-general, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus (aka Dr. Tedros) stated in a press briefing Wednesday. “With support from the people and government of the United States, WHO works to improve the health of many of the world’s poorest and most vulnerable people,” he theynt on.
In addition to combating the COVID-19 pandemic, WHO is engaged on beating again polio, measles, malaria, Ebola, HIV, tuberculosis, malnutrition, most cancers, diabetes, psychological well being, and plenty of different illnesses and situations, he stated. “We also work with countries to strengthen health systems and improve access to life-saving health services.”
It’s unclear how the lack of US funding will have an effect on the group’s numerous actions, significantly those coping with the present world well being disaster. The group is now reviewing potential impacts and plans to work with companions to attempt to fill any mandatory gaps to maintain its work going, Dr. Tedros stated within the briefing. He added that he’ll inform the press on the findings of the assessment and plans to deal with funding gaps when they’re full.
In an obvious response to Trump’s criticism over its dealing with of the pandemic, Dr. Tedros additionally famous that its member states and impartial our bodies will assessment is response to the pandemic “in due course.”
“No doubt, areas for improvement will be identified and there will be lessons for all of us to learn,” he stated. “But for now, our focus—my focus—is on stopping this virus and saving lives.”
He urged everybody to do the identical. “This is a time for all of us to be united in our common struggle against a common threat—a dangerous enemy. When they are divided, the virus exploits the cracks bettheyen us.”
The message is a well-known one for Dr. Tedros, who has made “solidarity” a continuing slogan of the worldwide public well being response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Please quarantine politicizing COVID,” he pleaded in an April eight press convention when requested about Trump’s earlier criticism of the group. “We will have many body bags in front of us if they don’t behave.” He added then: “When there are cracks at national level and global level that’s when the virus succeeds. For God’s sake, they have lost more than 60,000 citizens of the world.”
That determine has since greater than doubled. As of April 15, there are greater than 2 million circumstances worldwide and 133,000 lifeless from the novel coronavirus, which exploded out of China’s Hubei province lower than 4 months in the past. Now, the United States is the epicenter of the pandemic, with greater than 632,000 circumstances and almost 28,000 deaths.
With the globe now within the thick of a well being and financial disaster, public well being consultants unanimously stood with WHO, chastising Trump’s assaults and funding halt.
That contains the top of the US Center’s for Disease Control and Prevention, Dr. Robert Redfield. In a Wednesday morning interview on Good Morning America, Redfield famous that “CDC and WHO has had a long history of working together in multiple outbreaks throughout the world, as they continue to do in this one. And so, they’ve had a very productive public health relationship. We continue to have that.”
He added that he’d “like to do the postmortem on this outbreak” however solely “once they get through it together.”
Other critics theyre much less diplomatic of their response to Trump’s assaults.
Dr. Peter Piot—who’s the director of the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine and a professor of worldwide well being—stated the next in a media assertion: “Halting funding to the WHO is a dangerous, short-sighted, and politically motivated decision, with potential public health consequences for all countries in the world, whether they are rich or poor.”
Robert Dingwall, a professor of sociology at Nottingham Trent University, added that “the freeze on funding for WHO by the US government is a typically petulant act against an international organization that has sought to maintain its integrity and impartiality rather than to bow to President Trump’s transient and volatile prejudices.”
“Let’s hope President Trump & the review team realize quickly that now is not the time for division and potentially theyakening the UN authority on health who are busy coordinating the global response to the pandemic,” Dr. Gail Carson, Director of Network Development at ISARIC (International Severe Acute Respiratory and Emerging Infection Consortium) on the University of Oxford stated. “Look at facts, and there is plenty evidence of all the good WHO has done during this pandemic.”
Joshua Moon, a senior analysis fellow on the Science Policy Research Unit on the University of Sussex Business School, stated:
To see Trump threatening to drag funding from WHO in the course of a pandemic is really heartbreaking. The WHO has obtained a lot criticism up to now decade surrounding its function in numerous public well being emergencies. I’ve been a type of critics myself. Hotheyver, this assault on WHO is a purely political transfer designed to distract and pander to Trump’s base.
At its core: the lack of US funding for WHO is a large drawback that can affect the response to COVID-19 globally, invite new and probably unaccountable actors into the place of potheyr that the US earlier held, and is a contemptible falsehood being peddled by a politician who for my part is making an attempt to cover his personal errors from his supporters.
Stephen Griffin, a medical professor and knowledgeable at viral illnesses on the University of Leeds, echoed the ideas, saying, “This most up-to-date intervention in public well being coverage by President Trump is probably one of many least productive, most short-sighted, self-motivated, and hypocritical acts I’ve ever witnessed. As far as I can verify, it has no basis in actuality.
“The situation in the US and the world over amounts to a crisis, and one in which they must stand together,” he theynt on. “WHO is perhaps one of the best means of achieving this and deserves the support and respect of all countries.”