World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus on Monday called for countries to work together to ensure that a pandemic at the magnitude of COVID-19 shall not occur again in the near future.
"The pandemic's impact differs from country to country," Ghebreyesus said at the inaugural ceremony of the 74th Session of the WHO Regional Committee for Southeast Asia. "We must ensure that a pandemic of this magnitude does not occur in the near future."
He urged the entire world to work together to make it a reality.
Addressing the virtual session hosted by Nepal, top health executives emphasized the need for greater commitment to global healthcare delivery and a risk-averse health system, as well as the importance of providing vaccines, medicines, equipment and technology to the region.
Poonam Khetrapal Singh, WHO regional director for Southeast Asia, spoke of the significance of increasing the health sector's capability.
Nepali Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba stressed that for health care reaching out to individuals in distant areas should be a top concern for everyone.
The five-day session is being attended by representatives from Bangladesh, Bhutan, South Korea, India, Indonesia, the Maldives, Nepal, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Timor-Leste.