WHO Country Representative to Pak calls on Foreign Minister


ISLAMABAD: Foreign Minister Makhdoom Shah Mehmood Qureshi reiterating the government’s commitment to improve the healthcare system in the country, on Wednesday expressed hope that the World Health Organization (WHO) would continue providing its valuable support and cooperation to Pakistan.
The Foreign Minister was talking to WHO Country Representative to Pakistan Dr Palitha Gunarathna Mahipala, who called on him here. During the meeting, Dr Palitha presented his Credentials to the Foreign Minister as WHO Country Representative to Pakistan and briefed him on WHO’s key programmes and projects in Pakistan, a press release issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said.
The WHO has now intensified cooperation in dealing with threats like the outbreak of coronavirus (COVID-19). Foreign Minister Qureshi felicitated Dr Palitha on his appointment as WHO’s Country Representative to Pakistan. He appreciated the consistent support provided by the WHO for improving healthcare system in Pakistan.
While expressing concern over rapid spread of COVID-19 around the world with severe global implications, the Foreign Minister briefed the Country Representative on the steps taken by the Government of Pakistan to prevent the outbreak.
Briefing on the threat of COVID-19, the Country Representative stated that the epidemic had now affected 79 countries.
He presented a copy of a daily ‘Situation Report’ on COVID-19, prepared by the WHO, to the Foreign Minister that included analysis of the threat around the world, including Pakistan.He appreciated the robust and timely response of the Government of Pakistan against the threat of COVID-19, including the screening facilities at airports as well as establishment of quarantine and isolation centers, which has helped in controlling the epidemic in Pakistan. He also commended the National Institute of Health (NIH) for setting up quality testing facilities for COVID-19 in a short time. The Foreign Minister thanked Dr Palitha for his briefing and the work being done by the WHO to help control the spread of COVID-19, particularly the preparation of daily ‘situation report’ on the threat of COVID-19.