Technical assistance from WHO needed to intensify efforts to control dengue, eliminate malaria

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The WHO countries in South-East Asia resolved to accelerate efforts to control dengue which threatens nearly 1.3 billion people with frequent and large scale outbreaks, and control malaria, that continues to be endemic in the Region.
The 11-Member countries of the Region which accounts for one-fourth of the global population, 58% of the global burden of Plasmodium vivax malaria, and is at increasing risk of dengue and other vector borne diseases in view of the increasing urbanization and climate change, adopted a resolution to prioritize dengue control and malaria elimination.
To intensify efforts to control dengue and to eliminate malaria, Myanmar, as a member of the WHO, would like to urge the world body to carry out internal review and to upgrade the works of the technical assessment teams and to provide more technical assistance to its members.
Myanmar has included the processes for providing the people with access to essential medical products in the country’s national health strategy.
More than 70 per cent of medicines required by the hospitals are provided free of charge by the Union Government.
Besides, efforts are underway to establish the Supply Change Management System as part of efforts for minimizing wastages for medicines in storage and distribution processes.
Myanmar has hoped that it would buy quality medicines from its neighboring countries at a reasonable price with the technical assistance of the World Health Organization.
We believe that private sector participation will accelerate our efforts to control dengue and eliminate malaria.
Myanmar showed a significant improvement in malaria control and elimination programme in the past decade. Outbreak of malaria has been remarkably declining and Myanmar is expected to end malaria outbreak within five or ten years.
In 2017, malaria outbreak in Myanmar dropped by 82 per cent compared to that in 2012, and the malaria mortality rate declined by 92 per cent.
Of the over 31,000 patients with dengue fever, 192 died, including 27 adolescents and adults, last year. During this year, a total of 11,750 cases of dengue fever were recorded from 1 January to 4 August across the country, killing 59 people, according to a survey by the Public Health Department, under the Ministry of Health and Sports.
Reviewing the progress, challenges, capacities and opportunities for strengthening health workforce at the recent meeting of WHO South-East Asia, the countries including Myanmar agreed to continue to focus on frontline workers, improve rural retention and transformative education, and increase coordination between health and other ministries.
We welcome Regional Director WHO South-East Asia Dr Poonam Khetrapal Singh’s proposal to intensify multi-sectoral approach at the national as well as the grassroots level to reach the most vulnerable and marginalized communities, strengthen surveillance, operationalize cross-border collaboration and most importantly promote vector control.
At the same time, we would like to urge the WHO to carry out reforms decisively in some areas as part of efforts for effectively helping the management and works of the body.

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