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WHO talks collaboration with Uzbekistan's Ministry of Health amid COVID-19

25 August 2020 [17:24] - TODAY.AZ

By Trend

WHO provides support to Uzbekistan’s Ministry of Health in the area of clinical management by conducting regular webinars for clinicians across the country, discussing clinical management, prevention of complications, case studies, providing available updates on Kawasaki disease, multiorgan failure, vaccines, and antivirals which are currently being developed globally, Head of the WHO Country Office in Uzbekistan Doctor Lianne Kuppens told Trend in an interview.

“One of the priority areas of collaboration between World Health Organization and the Ministry of Health of Uzbekistan is the strengthening of national capacity for emergency preparedness, including support for the national laboratories to detect newly emerging pathogens, such as COVID-19,” Kuppens said.

Head of the WHO Country Office believes that Uzbekistan should continue to strengthen identification of the cases.

“The Government of Uzbekistan should invest further in contact tracing and testing to further boost its response to the COVID-19 pandemic, invest in human resources, extensively use of digital health tools, and continue improve the care of COVID-19 patients. Data collection and analysis should also be improved. As the pandemic evolves, new challenges arise,” Kuppens stressed.

She added that improvements in surveillance, testing strategy and thorough data analysis will help inform evidence-based decisions, including implementation of public health measures.

“Lastly, we have to urgently prepare for the upcoming flu epidemic. Ensure that the elderly, the vulnerable groups nationwide have access to the flu vaccine. Ensure that we integrate the flu surveillance with the COVID surveillance, ensure that we have the capacity to give adequate care to severe flu cases but at the same be able to give care to the severe COVID cases and these two patients can not be in the same room,” said Kuppens.

According to Head of the WHO Country Office in Uzbekistan, at this stage, WHO have no idea how the flu and COVID combined crisis will evolve.

“The COVID virus is still very new and we need to learn about the inter-action between these two viruses. But what we do know is that all governments should be prepare and further invest in both epidemics,” stressed Kuppens.

According to Doctor Kuppens, WHO recommends to continue with identifying cases, testing, isolating them and taking care of them, and as well finding the contacts of those infected and putting them into quarantine. The WHO also strongly advises countries not to go for complete lockdown again, but to strengthen the surveillance to be able to follow the virus and reduce further transmission.


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