Steadfast leadership vital to stop catastrophe: UNICEF Regional Director

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UNICEF Regional Director for South Asia George Laryea-Adjei said that urgent action and steadfast leadership are indispensable to stop the catastrophe and the Governments must do everything within their power to stop the devastation.

In his Statement, George Laryea-Adjei has said that the scenes people are witnessing in South Asia are unlike anything our region has seen before. Family members of patients are pleading for help as the region reels under an acute shortage of medical-grade oxygen. Exhausted health workers are being pushed to the brink of collapse. people faced with a real possibility that our health systems will be strained to a breaking point – leading to even more loss of life.

He has said, If the corona spread is not controlled, it will once more be the most vulnerable children and families who will suffer most. The first wave of the pandemic caused drastic cuts in the availability and use of essential public health services in South Asia, costing us the lives of an estimated 228,000 children and 11,000 mothers. We simply cannot let this happen again.

 George Laryea-Adjei has mentioned, Let us not forget our individual responsibility. Every decision we make has the potential to alter the course of this surge – and to either safeguard or endanger the lives of those around us. We may be exhausted, but the virus is not yet exhausted.

The very low levels of vaccination in South Asia magnify the likelihood of the virus spiraling even further out of control. In almost all countries in the region, except for Maldives and Bhutan, fewer than 1 in 10 people have been vaccinated. Now more than ever, we must ensure vaccines equitably reach all populations. Manufacturing must be ramped up, technology transferred, and doses equitably shared. None of us are safe until all of us are safe. 

Adding to this, he said, Viruses know no borders. We must come together now as a global community to stop the devastation and protect our children.

George Laryea-Adjei also said in the statement that partners that can send assistance must do so immediately. 

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