Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Highlighted Thailand’s Role in Advancing Universal Health Coverage at the UN Ministerial Meeting on Universal Health Coverage

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Highlighted Thailand’s Role in Advancing Universal Health Coverage at the UN Ministerial Meeting on Universal Health Coverage

10 Oct 2020

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Thailand’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs highlighted the country’s prominent and constructive role in advancing Universal Health Coverage (UHC) at the Ministerial Meeting on UHC, emphasising the importance of UHC in fostering health security and well-being, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic, as demonstrated in strong health systems and preparedness in response to crisis, the role and participation of people and communities as shown in the example of Thailand’s village health volunteers, and the value of promoting healthy lives and well-being for all, including the importance of disease prevention.

On 8 October 2020, H.E. Mr. Don Pramudwinai, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Thailand, delivered welcome remarks at the Ministerial Meeting on Universal Health Coverage (UHC). The sideline event was co-hosted by Thailand, Japan, Georgia, as co-chairs of Group of Friends on UHC and Global Health, and the World Health Organization (WHO) in a virtual format, during the 75th Session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA), to commemorate the first anniversary of the High-level Meeting on UHC and the adoption of the Political Declaration on UHC.

The event was attended by Ministers and other high-level officials, including the Foreign Ministers of Japan, Georgia and Kenya, the United Nations Secretary-General, the WHO Director-General as well as various stakeholders. Participants reaffirmed the urgent need to fulfill the commitments made in the Political Declaration in order to achieve UHC in 2030.

The Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs emphasised the importance of UHC in fostering health security and well-being. In the current context of the COVID-19 pandemic, this was clearly demonstrated in the following three areas: (1) strong health systems and preparedness in response to crisis, (2) the pivotal role and participation of people and communities as shown in the example of Thailand’s village health volunteers, and (3) the value of promoting healthy lives and well-being for all, including the importance of disease prevention.

The event underscored Thailand’s prominent and constructive role in the global health arena, especially on UHC, which is well-recognised by global community. Thailand, as Chair of the Foreign Policy and Global Health (FPGH) Initiative in 2017, successfully put forward two UN General Assembly resolutions, one marking 12 December as International UHC Day and the other calling for the convening of the HLM on UHC. Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Thailand to the United Nations in New York was also a co-facilitator for negotiations on the UHC Political Declaration, together with the Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Georgia.

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