On Wednesday, December 16, Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal met with WHO Regional Director for Europe Dr. Hans Kluge.
The parties discussed the prospects of cooperation between Ukraine and WHO and countering the spread of COVID-19.
The Prime Minister thanked the World Health Organization for assistance, technical expertise and advice on strengthening the capacity of the healthcare system of Ukraine, in particular in the context of responding to COVID-19.
"Ukraine fully supports the WHO in its efforts to ensure proper vaccine testing and approval, and advocates for the equitable distribution of vaccines in a spirit of global solidarity. I am convinced that the Agreement on Cooperation between Ukraine and the WHO lays a solid foundation and contains a clear roadmap for our expanded partnership," said Denys Shmyhal.
The Prime Minister stressed that today the development of safe and effective vaccines is the way out of the pandemic.
"Ukraine is a participant in the COVAX Global Fund's initiative, so we expect to receive the required number of vaccines in the first quarter of next year. Meanwhile, we would be grateful for help in obtaining a certain number of vaccines as soon as possible," said the Prime Minister.
Denys Shmyhal noted that Ukraine is also considering the possibility of producing vaccines using the domestic pharmaceutical facilities, provided that they meet the necessary requirements regarding the developer.
"I am pleased to visit Ukraine and have the opportunity to discuss cooperation between the WHO and the Government of Ukraine on joint action and rapid response to COVID-19, recovery measures, further sustainable development during the pandemic, including healthcare reform. This is a time for responsible leadership, and it requires additional decision-makers to support the healthcare system in this volatile context," said Dr. Hans Kluge.
The Prime Minister thanked the WHO Regional Director for Europe for the Organization’s continued attention to the epidemic situation in the occupied territories of Ukraine.