New Delhi, May 20 : Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan on Wednesday said the present pandemic crisis had shown that "a reformed multilateralism" is the need of the hour and global institutions of governance need to become "more democratic, transparent and representative," to be credible and effective.
Taking part in the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) Health Ministers' meeting through video-conference, Dr Vardhan said this is undoubtedly an unprecedented time in the planet's history. Novel Coronavirus has claimed more than three lakh precious lives, infected over forty lakh and snatched away the livelihoods of billions. He expressed condolences to those families across the world, who had lost their near and dear ones to this deadly disease.
The meeting was chaired by Ogtay Shiraliyev, Minister of Health, Republic of Azerbaijan. Dr Vardhan said, 'COVID-19 had made the world realise that we are more interconnected and interdependent than ever before. It has made us realise that the man-made challenges that our planet faces today - such as climate change and public health emergencies - can only be faced together, not when we are divided. It requires collaboration, not coercion.
' On it's part, he said, India had been fighting the Covid battle with a firm political will. Prime Minister Narendra Modi had ensured speed, scale and determination in the handling of this crisis. 'India took every possible step to ensure that we contain the spread of the virus,' the Minister added. The NAM Summit is being organised at a time when the international community has been faced with a pandemic which has disrupted the lives and livelihood of millions of people around the world. NAM expressed its concern at the global threat posed by COVID-19 and resolved to fight it with proper preparedness, prevention, resilience-building, and greater national, regional and international collaboration.
According to Dr Vardhan, the country's policy of Micro Identification, Mass Isolation and Quick Treatment reaped good dividends in preventing large-scale spread and deaths due to COVID-19. The Government had added capacity in terms of infrastructure as well as manpower with a fleet of 10,000 dedicated Covid hospitals and Care Centers and a trained healthcare workforce of over two million, he said.
Besides, India had also extended help to other countries and in the immediate neighbourhood of South Asia, it had promoted coordination to counter COVID-19 and organised capacity building by sharing India's medical expertise, he pointed out. (UNI)