Tal vid toppmötet för the Global Health Security Agenda i Seoul, 8 September 2015
Det talade ordet gäller.
Talking about multi-sectoral cooperation, I firstly would like to address the report of the Ebola Interim Assessment Panel and its recommendations. It gives a strong message for the need for clear understanding.
A clear understanding of how a public health emergency must and can fit into the wider humanitarian system.
A clear understanding of IHR, by all of us, so it is implemented and enforced properly, by all of us.
What is also clear from the report – and what is also perfectly clear from what actually happened – is that, once again, we tend to look to our own narrow remits. No big picture and no wider connected world.
So still we think of ‘over there’, and of ‘them’, and of ‘us’.
What Ebola made perfectly clear – as HIV/AIDS did – is that in the world we now live in, and die in, ‘over there’ means over here and ‘they’ means ‘us’
The science is clear enough. The economics are clear enough. History is clear enough.
So perhaps our greatest contribution as politicians and leaders in health is to be clear enough ourselves.
That these threats have, can, and will again infect and affect anyone.
And so everyone, and anywhere. Anywhere in the world.
For more and more of us AMR – antimicrobial resistance - sums up and defines what we do and don’t do with medical knowledge.
How those we leaders fail to listen, or think, or act, or work together .
In a few weeks it will be exactly seventy years ago that Alexander Fleming on receiving his Nobel Prize clearly told the world that resistance would follow.
What would he think of our efforts since then? And with AMR’s threat to modern medicine now so clear, what will our children think of us tomorrow?
So we too have to be clear, with others, and with ourselves about what is really needed.
To cooperate, to implement and to succeed needs political awareness, and then action at the very highest level.
Which is up to you, and me, and us.
Like for AMR: with the Alliance of Champions a group of Health ministers formed at the WHA this year to increase political awareness, engagement and leadership.
Like calling for a high-level session of the UN on AMR, no later than 2016.
It can be done. There is a saying of Mandela’s that ‘Everything is impossible until it is done’
Another saying - by all people is ‘Where there is a will, there is a way’.
We can make cooperation, implementation, and enforcement work, but only together and only through our full political support and commitment.
Now it is up to us.