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Greek Health Minister, Mr Adonis Georgiadis, addresses WHO General Assembly Session in Geneva

Wednesday, 21 May 2014

Health Minister Mr Adonis Georgiadis, representing the EU in the context of the Greek EU Presidency, addressed the 67th session of the World Health Organization (WHO) General Assembly, held at the premises of the UN in Geneva, on the 19th of May.

This was the first time that a Greek Minister of Health addressed the World Health Assembly, after the General Director of WHO, Mrs Margaret Chan, on behalf of the European Union.

The Health Minister referred to the climate change, characterizing it as a global issue that needs to be handled globally because of its impact on the weather, nutrition, water and air quality, the flora and fauna and consequently on human health through the spread of viruses and epidemics.

During his speech, he praised the role of WHO, noting that it fully meets the complex, contemporary challenges in the health sector.

As an EU representative, Mr Georgiadis underlined the importance of the successful implementation of the international health regulations and referred, specifically, to the recent outbreaks of epidemics like polio, Mers and Embola virus. Furthermore, he stressed the EU‘s concern about the ongoing humanitarian crises in regions like Central Africa, South Sudan and Syria as well as the disastrous consequences of the typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines.

He also underlined the need for reforms and participation of independent organizations in the WHO administration, which should be neutral and free of any kind of conflicts of interest so as to guarantee the successful implementation of health policies.

During his visit in Geneva, the Greek Health Minister met with the Acting Director- General of the United Nations Office in Gneva, Mr Michael Moeller.

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