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FG tasks ECOWAS ministers on climate-resilient health systems

The Coordinating Minister of Health and Social Welfare, Prof. Muhammad Ali Pate, has enjoined ministers of health across the sub-region to prioritise climate-resilient health systems…

The Coordinating Minister of Health and Social Welfare, Prof. Muhammad Ali Pate, has enjoined ministers of health across the sub-region to prioritise climate-resilient health systems and integrate environmental considerations into health policies and programmes.

He made the call Sunday in Abuja during the 25th Ordinary Session of the Assembly of Health Ministers of ECOWAS, organised by the West African Health Organisation (WAHO).

He said the impact of climate change on health was real and becoming increasingly evident through extreme weather events, changing disease patterns, migrations and environmental degradation, which posed new threats to the health of the population.

He said since the last meeting of the assembly, significant efforts have continued in the sub-region to improve health outcomes for the populations, adding that “our collaborative efforts in combating infectious diseases, including Lassa fever and, most recently, meningitis, have demonstrated the power of our unity and shared purpose.”

He said through the ECOWAS Regional Centre for Disease Surveillance and Control, the sub-region has strengthened its capacity to detect, prevent and respond to public health threats.

The President of the ECOWAS Commission, Dr Omar Alieu Touray,  said it is estimated that more than 20 million people need humanitarian aid and more than three million are internally displaced persons in the ECOWAS region.

The Director General of WAHO, Dr Melchior Athanase, said the certification of Cape Verde as malaria-free is also a strong signal that the other countries in the ECOWAS region are capable of eradicating diseases of public health concern.

 

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