11 July 2024

Thai Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul has expressed full support for the development of a legally binding international instrument, which is a combination of a treaty and other international texts serving as legal sources on pandemic preparedness and response, because it will strengthen the capabilities of the global community and individual countries to respond to a pandemic.

He said that the COVID-19 pandemic demonstrates the need for a complete change in our thinking to survive and a WHO convention, agreement or international instrument on pandemic preparedness and response will help with that.

Anutin is in Geneva, Switzerland, attending a special session of World Health Assembly (WHA), scheduled from Monday through Wednesday, to consider the benefits of developing of a convention, agreement or international instrument.

In his address to the WHA special session, the Thai minister said that developed or developing countries should have a role in formulating innovations and technology and in sharing their knowhow in monitoring and coping with coronavirus, especially the new Omicron variant.

He said that he hopes, with better technologies and knowhow in the future, the world will be able to cope more effectively with new viral threats and reduce the impacts on the global economy and society.