The General Assembly of the United Nations
Agenda item 126
World health and foreign policy
Information on measures taken by the government of Turkmenistan in the field of public health protection and to combat the pandemic of coronavirus infection COVID-19, as set out in the letter of the President of Turkmenistan Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov to the Director General of the world health organization Tedros Gebreyesus.
Due to the emergence of a new type of infection – the coronavirus infection COVID-19, today humanity is faced with a new, extremely serious challenge, covering vast geographical areas, affecting the lives of many States and peoples.
In this regard, more than ever before, there is a need to intensify international cooperation aimed at developing coordinated steps to successfully counter this threat.
In the current conditions, countries must show the best qualities inherent in all the peoples of the world – humanism, mutual support, and solidarity.
Today, each state and the world community as a whole requires special responsibility, balance and foresight in making certain decisions. All countries must be aware of the fact that only through joint efforts can they achieve results in the fight against this dangerous infection.
As a responsible member of the international community, Turkmenistan has established close working contacts with the United Nations, its specialized bodies and agencies, especially the world health organization (WHO), since the first days of the threat.
Meetings with WHO representatives in Turkmenistan, videoconferences with the WHO Geneva headquarters are held on a regular basis, and a working dialogue mechanism has been established with the WHO European office in a remote mode.
Such forms of joint work are a logical continuation of our country's long-term and effective partnership with The Organization that you lead and other United Nations entities that deal with human health issues.
Human life, health and safety are the main priorities of Turkmenistan's state policy, the main motto of which is the principle " the State is for the person!". Based on this, priority is given to the further development of health care. This is done on a systematic basis.
In 1995, Turkmenistan adopted the state program "Health", the essence of which was to create a new health system based on the best international practices of organizing medical services for the population.
It was during this period – in the second half of the 1990s and early 2000s-that a fundamentally new model of human health protection was formed and began to work successfully in our country, which allowed us to maximize the delivery of medical care to every citizen and significantly expand the range of medical services. The implementation of these tasks was largely due to the creation of a powerful material and technical base for healthcare, the acquisition of modern medical equipment, the introduction of advanced methods of treatment and prevention of various diseases, the training of highly qualified personnel, and the development of medical science.
The effective implementation of the "Health" program has become a clear demonstration of the reality and timeliness of the goals set. An example of this is the scale of construction of new modern clinics of international level, hospitals, hospitals, medical centers, health homes throughout the country.
Territory of Turkmenistan. In total, during the implementation of the above-mentioned program, 92 medical institutions were built and put into operation, equipped with equipment from well-known world manufacturers.
At the same time, the system of medical education received further improvement. The state medical University successfully operates in the country, where future medical workers are trained they are trained in such specialties as medicine, Pediatrics, dentistry, sanitation and hygiene, pharmacy, sports medicine, military medicine and other areas. In addition, there are five medical schools in Turkmenistan that provide training for secondary medical personnel – nurses (brothers) and paramedics.
Naturally, such an important area of state activity as healthcare cannot be developed effectively without proper scientific support. And here we should emphasize the high efficiency of scientific developments of Turkmen medical scientists, which allowed us to solve many issues related to the treatment and prevention of diseases in our country.
At the same time, they carry out their scientific activities in close cooperation with their foreign colleagues.
The most important component of the "Health" program is the active international activity of the health authorities of Turkmenistan, their involvement in the implementation of global, regional, country strategies and programs. In this important matter, our reliable and long-term partners these are reputable international organizations, primarily The United Nations, such as WHO, The United Nations Development Program, the United Nations Children's Fund, and the United Nations Population Fund.
Over the years of cooperation with these organizations, a number of important projects have been implemented, the results of which are of great practical significance in improving the health of people in Turkmenistan, protecting them from dangerous diseases, and preventing diseases. This activity has been repeated several times it is appreciated at the international level.
In particular, our country has been awarded the following international awards and certificates:
- A certificate of eradication of dracunculosis (2000);
- Certificate the WHO on the eradication of poliomyelitis (2002);
- Official recognition of Turkmenistan as the fourth country in the world to achieve universal salt iodization (2004);
- The certificate of the WHO on malaria elimination (2010);
- International award for leadership in the cause of the flour fortification (2011);
- WHO Commemorative medal and certificate of appreciation to the President of Turkmenistan for his great contribution to the fight against tobacco Smoking (2014);
- Certificate the WHO Regional office for the achievement of measles and rubella elimination (2016);
- WHO Certificate for outstanding contribution to the prevention of no communicable diseases (2019);
- Certificate of the United Nations Children's Fund for maintaining high rates of child immunization in the country through the government-funded national immunization program (2019);
- WHO Certificate confirming the status of the national center for influenza reference laboratory of Virology as part of the Center for public health and nutrition with inclusion in the WHO Global system for influenza surveillance and response (2019).
At the same time, it should be noted that currently in Turkmenistan, the population is vaccinated against 14 infections, which greatly contributes to strengthening the protective function of the human body against dangerous diseases.
As can be seen from the above, our state is making significant efforts at the national and international levels to combat infectious and non-communicable diseases, and is taking all measures to eliminate the causes that give rise to them.
The positive experience of Turkmenistan in the field of health care has become the basis for taking timely and adequate actions of the government to reduce the risks of spreading infectious diseases caused by COVID-19 to the territory of the country.
In this regard, we should highlight the following most important aspects of our state's activities.
First, Turkmenistan has now formed a unified national strategy to combat coronavirus infection, the content of which is a set of organizational, legal, financial, economic, sanitary-epidemiological, medical, and quarantine measures.
Among the fundamental organizational actions was the creation of a Government Commission to combat dangerous infectious diseases, which included members of the government, heads of ministries, departments, and local Executive bodies. An interagency coordination mechanism, the operational headquarters, was also established, with the involvement of representatives of government agencies responsible for health, transport, trade, Finance, and law enforcement agencies.
It should be emphasized that the above-mentioned coordination structures are vested with appropriate powers in accordance with the legislation and all their actions are carried out on the basis of protocols and plans adopted at meetings of the Government Commission.
At the same time, work is currently under way with United Nations agencies working in Turkmenistan, including the WHO country office, to prepare a national plan for preparedness and response to coronavirus infection.
Secondly, the health authorities have all the necessary means to ensure sanitary and epidemiological control. In particular, since the emergence of COVID-19 in the world, the relevant departments of the Ministry of health and medical industry have been testing all persons arriving in Turkmenistan from abroad. In relation to this category of citizens, quarantine and regime measures are also carried out.
In this context, Central and local health authorities have been provided with resources such as laboratory diagnostics, medicines, supplies and supplies, including personal protective equipment. There is also a sufficient reserve of bed capacity to ensure quarantine in accordance with existing norms and standards.
Preventive measures occupy a special place in the activities of health authorities. In all institutions, enterprises, educational institutions, and pre-school institutions, citizens have been provided with temperature control, and strict personal hygiene rules have been introduced, in particular, the treatment of hands with special disinfectants, the use of medical products and preventive medications. In addition, regular work is carried out to disinfect shopping centers, markets, educational institutions, and public transport.
Third, today our country has a system of phyto sanitary control and veterinary supervision that allows us to ensure an appropriate level of safety from the introduction of various diseases into the territory of Turkmenistan through the movement of plants and animals, as well as products of plant and animal origin. Teams consisting of specialists from the Ministry of agriculture and environmental protection and other relevant state bodies of Turkmenistan work at all checkpoints across the State border. Their main task is to carry out a set of measures for disinfection, disinfection and decontamination of territories.
Fourthly, immediately after receiving information about the outbreak of a dangerous new type of infection in the world, the government began implementing measures aimed at restricting the entry of foreign citizens into Turkmenistan and the departure of Turkmen citizens from the country. This work was carried out in several stages.
The number of international flights has also started to decrease. Today, according to the decision of the Government Commission, flights can be organized on a one-time basis at the request of foreign embassies to transport foreign citizens to their countries of residence.
It should be emphasized that such measures are temporary.
Fifthly, while understanding the seriousness of the situation in the world caused by the coronavirus pandemic, Turkmenistan is fully aware of the need to ensure the stability and stability of trade and economic relations between States in these conditions, as well as the viability of transport links.
In close cooperation with our partners, first of all with neighboring States, Turkmenistan is working to ensure that these ties are not disrupted and that reliable mutual supply and transit transport schemes are maintained on the Eurasian continent.
Thanks to coordinated steps taken by Turkmenistan and its neighboring States, the normal operation of transport corridors along the East–West and North–South lines has been ensured.
Sixth, a significant aspect in countering the spread of a dangerous infectious disease is the clear organization of internal migration in the country. Turkmenistan has introduced a procedure according to which entry into and exit from border areas is carried out in a special manner. At the same time, control over movement on highways and Railways is carried out by employees of health and internal Affairs agencies. Of course, this is also a temporary measure, valid only during the fight against the spread of a dangerous infection in the world.
Seventh, the most important element in the fight against coronavirus infection is educational work, the main purpose of which is to ensure a clear understanding of the population of the danger of a new infectious disease. This work is carried out everywhere among all segments of the population – in kindergartens, schools, universities, military units, enterprises, and institutions. Citizens social behavior norms, personal hygiene rules are explained, and other necessary information is provided. With a full understanding of the importance of health education, the government is taking measures to involve scientists, teachers, representatives of public organizations, creative figures in agitation and educational activities, and using the opportunities of the mass media.
Turkmenistan's actions in the current situation fully comply with the WHO recommendations developed in the context of countering the spread of coronavirus infection COVID-19 in the world.
The experience gained by Turkmenistan in the field of health in General and in the fight against infectious diseases in particular could be used in the activities of WHO.