WHO reviewing impact of Trump’s decision to withhold funding

• We're working with partners to fill financial gap created

The World Health Organisation (WHO) on Thursday said it was reviewing the impact of the decision of the United States President, Donald Trump, to withhold its funding to the organisation on its works and activities.

Tribune Online reports that the WHO Country Representative in Nigeria, Dr. Fiona Braka regretted the hold on the funding by the US to WHO; and declared that the organisation was working hard with partners to fill the financial gaps faced by President Trump decision in order to ensure that the works of the organization continue uninterrupted at this critical time.

Speaking at the daily briefing by the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 in Abuja, Dr. Braka, said the WHO really wanted to improve the health of many world’s poorest and most vulnerable people, with supports from the US.

The WHO Country representative said: “On the hold in funding from USA to WHO and its impact, I just like to mention indeed, that the USA has been a long-standing partner and friend of WHO and we hope it will continue to do so, or to be so.

“We regret the decision of the President of United States to hold funding to WHO. With support from the people and government of the United States, WHO really wants to improve the health of many of the world’s poorest and most vulnerable people.

“WHO is reviewing the impacts of the hold on our works and withdraw of US funding and we will be working hard with partners to fill the financial gaps that we face and ensure that at this critical time that the works continue uninterrupted.

“I will also like to mention that at the just concluded 73rd World Health Assembly that held on 18 – 19 of May, that included Ministers of Health from around the world, in the 194 member states as well as Heads of States from 14 countries it was agreed as the central of the meeting that global unity was the most powerful tool to combat the COVID-19 outbreak.

“A resolution was adopted at the assembly for intensification of efforts to control the pandemic.”

Also speaking, the Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire said infections among health workers have reduced significantly, adding, “as we scale up training of health workers on infection prevention and control, infection among our health workers has reduced significantly.

“We have trained the 4th batch of Health Care Workers and Patent and Proprietary Medicine Vendors in Kano State. Training and retraining is a continuous process and we shall sustain the initiative. In addition, the Federal Ministry of Health through Nigeria Center for Disease Control had a high level engagement with Hospital Services and Secondary health facilities to improve patients’ management and data qualities.

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“State-level Infection Prevention and Control (IPC) trainings working with partners to step down trainings at community level is currently ongoing.”

The minister pointed out that about 70% of the deaths recorded as a result of COVID-19, were those with hypertension and diabetes; and stressed the need for those with underlying sicknesses to take care of their health and adhere strictly to PTF advisory on prevention.

Dr. Ehanire said: “We are careful about our numbers to ensure that the figures we announce are accurate. Sometimes, there are errors, but we correct them as soon as they are noticed. As at this morning, we have recorded a total of 6,677 confirmed cases in 34 states and the FCT out of which 1,840 have been successfully treated and discharged.

“Unfortunately we have recorded 200 deaths in 25 states and the FCT. A curious finding from the analysis of the deaths shows that nearly half of them died at home. Of those who died at home, about 50% did not show any symptom.

“This underscores my earlier emphasis on the need for those who test positive to report for treatment. I would also advise those who have taken the test and are awaiting result to heed the advisory to self-isolate from friends, wear face masks and observe hand and respiratory hygiene until your result is releases. By so doing, you will be protecting your family, your friends and your community.”

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