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According to the statement of the SCO Secretary General Vladimir Norov, in connection with the current epidemiological situation, the member states of the Organization are considering proposals for a quick response to outbreaks of infectious diseases. For consideration of the relevant departments of the Member States, proposals were sent to develop a mechanism for prompt reporting in the event of a focus of an infectious disease in any of the countries with a tendency to spread widely.
Activity in this direction is dictated by the pandemic of the new coronavirus. “Today the situation is such, that, out of the member-countries of the SCO, the virus has affected not only China, but also Russia, India, and Pakistan. High concern is caused by the speed of spread of the disease in one of the observer-states – Iran,” said Vladimir Norov. To fight the spread of the infection, the five countries are sharing their experience and methods, help is coming from the PRC through the sending of medicines, equipment, and protective clothing. A group of virology specialists was sent from Russia to China. According to Vladimir Norov, joint efforts should speed up work on the creation of a vaccine.
It should be recalled that in June 2018, the heads of the SCO member states adopted a statement on joint opposition to the threats of epidemics in member-states of the organization. “We believe that the provisions recorded in it, in particular, the exchange of reliable information about the diseases and the response measures taken, the implementation of measures to increase the anti-epidemic potential, are universal,” the SCO Secretary General emphasized.
Currently, Vladimir Norov believes, issues of interaction between countries in the field of healthcare are coming to the fore: there is an increase in the incidence of new unknown infections in the world, and known diseases are changing their properties and spreading to new territories. Today, as with the example of the spread of coronavirus, it can be observed that any outbreak of an infectious disease can very quickly develop into a global threat.
Earlier, SCO member states have already joined forces to effectively confront various diseases and infections. Currently, the five countries have a number of mechanisms that ensure interaction between member states. “In a word, the current mechanisms of cooperation between the SCO countries on the prevention and non-proliferation of diseases are fully implemented and sufficient to effectively counter the challenges and threats of public health,” Vladimir Norov concluded.