On December 16, the heads of BRICS Heads of services responsible for ensuring sanitary and epidemiological well-being met via videoconference. The meeting was chaired by Head of Rospotrebnadzor (Federal Service for Surveillance on Consumer Rights Protection and Human Wellbeing) Anna Popova.
Delegations from the BRICS countries attended the meeting. Reports were given by Antonio Barra Torres, President Director of the Brazilian Health Regulatory Agency (Anvisa); Sujeet Kumar Singh, Director of the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) of the Republic of India; Qinghua He, Counsel of the Bureau of Disease Prevention and Control of the PRC’s National Health Commission, and Tsakani Furumeli, Director of the Centre for Disease Control at the National Department of Health, South Africa.
The officials discussed a range of issues on preventing and countering epidemics, including the coronavirus, COVID-19. The coronavirus pandemic has again emphasised the importance of international cooperation in countering infections. Concerted efforts and the exchange of experience are of decisive importance for the effective and well-coordinated struggle against the spread of contagious diseases. The need to ensure sanitary-epidemiological welfare has acquired special significance for the Russian BRICS Chairmanship.
“You know about our initiative to create a comprehensive BRICS early warning system for risks of infectious epidemics. We hope this will be used in practice,” Ms Popova said in her speech at the meeting.
The participants discussed current global challenges related to other infectious diseases that continue to threaten sustainable development, in part in the BRICS countries, and that require well-coordinated and concerted efforts by BRICS.
In conclusion, the participants approved a draft of the joint statement on the initiatives of the BRICS countries in developing international cooperation on preventing global infections, protecting the people from them and coordinating research on these issues.