Islamabad October 7, 2015 - Addressing G5 meeting during the WHO Regional Committee meeting in Kuwait, Minister for National Health Services Saira Afzal Tarar said G 5 is a good platform for member countries to share their experiences, set up multi-sectoral mechanisms for universal health coverage to address different elements of the health system and identify areas and mechanisms of how G 5 countries can support each other in different areas.

In G 5 meeting held in Islamabad in November 2013 certain recommendations were made for countries and WHO.  We need to ensure that follow up action is taken on those recommendations and status report shared with all stakeholders.

There is emergent need to focus on IHR implementation and communicable diseases which is common in the region and effective cooperation is needed to control and prevent them. Diseases know no borders and can spread rapidly across countries with increasing travel and trade. communicable diseases them Countries can learn from each other’s experiences and can help and support neighboring countries in prevent spread of communicable and neglected tropical disease (leishmaniosis, CCHF, dengue etc.) diseases.

Pakistan suggests close collaboration of neighboring countries to prevent cross border migration of communicable diseases, vaccine production and capacity development in laboratory diagnosis and surveillance.

We believe that access to equitable quality health services is that right of every individual. Pakistan has recently launched a major initiative to provide universal health coverage by reaching out to the most vulnerable segment with a comprehensive National Health Insurance Initiative – The Prime Minister’s Health Insurance Program.

I would like to hold out the assurance that Pakistan remains keen on further strengthening regional collaboration. Out issues are common. So is our perception on addressing them. We have a better understanding of each other’s cultural and historical realities. The Post 2015 development agenda will require a great deal of mutual collaboration and learning from each other’s experiences and best practices.