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Health for All, All for Health: Invite Taiwan to attend the 71st World Health Assembly (21-26 May 2018)

Health for All, All for Health: Invite Taiwan to attend the 71st World Health Assembly (21-26 May 2018)
  
  

 


Why this is important

Petition to Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO)

While since 2009, Taiwan has been invited by the WHO to participate as an observer to its World Health Assembly (WHA). In 2017, without discussion and decision of any Member State of the Organization, and any legal basis, Taiwan was not invited to attend the WHA and was then not included in this important global meeting.

Given that today Taiwanese authorities haven’t received yet an invitation to attend the 71st WHA that will take place in Geneva from 21 to 26 May 2018, a growing number of citizens in Taiwan and worldwide are concerned by such situation and fear that Taiwan will be once again not invited.

Such situation is really incomprehensible because:

- excluding 23.5 millions of people living in Taiwan is against the principles of WHO, namely “Health for All” and the “Right to Health”.

- while communicable diseases such as Ebola, avian flu, Zika and many others do not respect borders, not including Taiwan in the discussions and mechanisms to fight such virus represents a global health risk for everybody

- as the 21st economic power in the world as well as a country recognized for the quality and the access levels of its health system, Taiwan is able to bring and share her experience and expertise to support actively WHO and its Member States to achieve health-related UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

- Taiwan which has an enduring challenges to deal with air pollution, shared by many of her neighboring countries, would streghten its capacity to deal with such transnational health issue if Taiwanese authorities were able to participate to the crucial discussion on a ‘Comprehensive global strategy on health, environment and climate change’ that will take place during the coming WHA.

Complementary to the petitions sent to the WHO early April 2018 by numerous Member States and regional organizations asking for Taiwan’s participation to the 71st WHA, this international petition calls on the WHO not to waste any time to invite Taiwan to attend the 71st WHA because an international organization that promotes “Health for All”– as its main goal cannot deliberately exclude 23.5 million people from global health governance.

As the former Health minister who fought against health inequalities in Ethiopia, Chair of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria Board, and since May 2017, Director-General of WHO, we are convinced that combatting health injustices remain today a cornerstone of your mission.

This conviction leads us to think that, under your direction, WHO will restore health justice and invite Taiwan to attend the 71st WHA.

人人健康,全民健康:邀請台灣參與第71屆世界衛生大會 (2018/5/21-26)

向世界衛生組織總幹事泰德羅斯.艾德哈姆諾博士請願

自從2009年,台灣受世界衛生組織(WHO)的邀請以觀察員的身份參加世界衛生大會(WHA)。然而,在2017年未經任何WHO會員國的討論、決策與法律依據,台灣未收到參加WHA的邀請。從此之後,台灣就被這全球重要的盛會摒除在外。

有鑒於台灣當局至今尚未收到任何邀請函參加即將在今年5月21日至26日在日內瓦所舉辦的第71屆世界衛生大會,越來越多台灣與其他國家的民眾相當擔憂台灣將再次無法收到任何邀請。

這種情況相當無法讓人理解的是:

- 排除居住在台灣的2350萬人民其實是違背了WHO的原則,也就是「人人享有衛生保健」以及「健康權」。

- 儘管有像是伊波拉病毒、茲卡病毒與禽流感等無法限制傳染範圍的疾病,在這些對抗病毒的機制與討論當中不包括台灣的話則會對每個人都構成全球健康風險。

- 做為21世紀的經濟強國,以及以醫療衛生系統的品質與容易取得性聞名的台灣,能夠分享其專業與經驗來積極支持WHO與其會員國來達成醫療衛生相關的聯合國永續發展目標。

- 台灣長期難以應對空汙的挑戰,許多鄰國也遭遇此問題,所以如果台灣能夠積極參與這次WHA有關「全面性的全球衛生、環境與氣候變遷之策略」的重要草案擬定會談,將能幫助台灣在衛生保健議題上更具影響力。

許多會員國以及區域組織已在今年4月初向WHO發送請願書要求台灣參與第71屆的WHA,而這份國際請願書再次呼籲了WHO不該浪費任何時間就應該邀請台灣參與第71屆WHA,因為這是一個國際組織標榜「人人享有衛生保健」。因此不可在全球衛生治理當中排除這2350萬人。

做為一位致力於對抗衣索比亞健康不平等的前衛生部長,對抗愛滋病、肺結核與瘧疾的全球基金理事會前主席,並在2017年5月新上任的WHO總幹事,我們堅信對抗健康不正義仍是您今天日常使命中的基石。

而這堅定的信念會引導我們認為在您的指導之下,WHO會恢復健康正義並邀請台灣參加第71屆的WHA


Posted April 13, 2018
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