Health Minister Bernard Attends World Health Assembly in Geneva

Health Minister Bernard Attends World Health Assembly in Geneva

Minister of Health and Wellness Kevin Bernard is in Geneva, Switzerland attending the seventy-seventh World Health Assembly. The event, organized by the World Health Organization, seeks to bring together health ministers from across the globe to discuss current and future priorities for public health issues of global importance. This year’s theme is, “All for Health, Health for All”, which highlights the need to improve access to healthcare globally. Yesterday, Bernard echoed Belize’s commitment to improving its healthcare system and spoke on breakthroughs in health that have been made.

Kevin Bernard, Minister of Health and Wellness: “In combating communicable diseases, our robust immunization campaign has achieved over 90% vaccination coverage, protecting our children and vulnerable populations. I am proud to announce that Belize has been certified malaria-free and has achieved zero mother-to-child transmission of HIV and Syphilis; milestones reflecting our dedication to public health. Addressing NCDs remains a priority through our National NCD Strategic Plan we have enhanced public awareness, early detection, and promoted healthier lifestyles. We have updated our National Cancer Strategic Plan and are working towards eliminating cervical cancer with support from PAHO/WHO, increasing the availability of cancer pharmaceuticals. Mental health is another area of progress. We have completed our mental health policy and integrated mental health services into primary health care, ensuring accessibility and reducing stigma. Additionally, we have launched our nutrition policy and completed a draft tobacco control bill strengthening our public health legislative framework. Belize has removed all clinical fees at public health facilities, ensuring financial barriers do not hinder access to health care. Our NHI services have been expanded with plans to roll out NHI across the entire country next year. We have also enhanced our diagnostic capabilities with investments in a 128-slice diagnostic CT scanner and new X-ray machines for regional facilities. These advancements are crucial for timely and accurate diagnosis, improving patient outcomes. As we gather here at the World Health Assembly, Belize reaffirms its commitment to the global health agenda. We recognize that achieving health for all requires collaborative efforts, shared knowledge and mutual support. Belize stands ready to contribute to and learn from the collective wisdom of this assembly.”

Belize also echoed its support for Taiwan’s participation in the event and other international agencies.

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