G20 Health Ministers will meet on 20 June to discuss ways to strengthen global health systems. The meeting provides an opportunity to work together to deliver meaningful improvements for people across the globe.
Under Indonesia’s G20 Presidency and led by Indonesian Health Minister Budi Gunadi Sadikin, Ministers will consider ways to address concerns and build on success stories that have emerged during the pandemic.
Ministers will consider ways to reduce the impediments for travellers as they cross borders. A pilot project will test ways for countries to recognise the vaccine certificates used by different countries, helping to get trade and travel back to normal.
The meeting will also discuss ways to build on some of the frameworks that have been so important globally during the pandemic. The Global Initiative on Sharing Avian Influenza Data (GISAID initiative) and the Access to COVID Tools Accelerator proved invaluable in sharing data and driving the development and rollout of COVID‑19 diagnostics, therapeutics, and vaccines.
The ACT-Accelerator in particular has been crucial, with its vaccine pillar – COVAX – delivering over 1.5 billion doses to 146 countries and territories.
Discussions on these issues will continue over coming months, culminating in the final Health Ministers’ meeting in October.
While COVID-19 remains challenging, we now need to look beyond the immediate pandemic and consider ways to bolster our region’s ability to prepare and respond to future disease threats.
Australia is doing this by investing in our own vaccine production capacity and establishing an Australian Centre for Disease Control, helping to ensure we are better prepared for future pandemics.
These initiatives build on Australia’s commitment to work with our Indo-Pacific region to strengthen health security and respond to the pandemic. Australia has already shared more than 40 million vaccine doses and we will continue to work with our Quad Vaccine Partners— India, Japan, and the US—to share doses where and when they are needed, and to build better health security.
Ministers also discuss a range of other health priorities, including tuberculosis, one health and antimicrobial resistance, recognising that while the pandemic has demanded attention, continued efforts are needed to avoid losing progress on these important issues.
Quotes attributable to Minister Butler:
“I am pleased to have the opportunity to represent Australia at the G20 Health Ministers Meeting to discuss the challenges and opportunities in global health reform.”
“Australia welcomes Indonesia’s G20 health priorities and looks forward to working with other countries to ensure the world is better prepared for future disease risks.”
“Everyone, no matter where they live and what their circumstances, should have access to quality, affordable and safe health care and as a member of the global community Australia stands ready to help communities in our region and beyond.”