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G20 Health Ministers Coordinate Efforts to Combat COVID-19

Press release, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, April 19, 2020

The G20 Health Ministers held a virtual meeting today to further coordinate efforts in combatting COVID-19.

G20 Ministers emphasized that people's health and well-being are at the heart of all decisions taken to protect lives, tackle illness, strengthen global health security, and alleviate the socio-economic impacts resulting from COVID-19. They also shared national experiences and adopted preventative measures to contain the pandemic.

Health Ministers recognized that the COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted systemic weaknesses in health systems. It also has shown vulnerabilities in the global community's ability to prevent and respond to pandemic threats. Ministers addressed the need to improve the effectiveness of global health systems by sharing knowledge and closing the gap in response capabilities and readiness.

Ministers echoed G20 Leaders' concern regarding the risks posed by the pandemic to developing and least developed countries, where health systems and economies may be less able to cope with the challenge.

The meeting also addressed necessary actions to improve pandemic preparedness, the importance of utilizing digital solutions in current and future pandemics, the emphasis on patient safety and the importance of improving value in health systems as well as antimicrobial resistance.

G20 Health Ministers will take any further actions that may be required to contain the pandemic and will reconvene again as necessary.

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Source: Official website of the Saudi G20 Presidency

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