August 23, 2017
Readout of Secretary Price’s Meetings in Beijing, China
On Sunday, August 20, Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price, M.D. arrived in Beijing, China, as part of a three-nation visit to Asia in support of President Donald Trump's commitment to global health security. Secretary Price first met with China-based academics and non-governmental health organizations during a dinner hosted by Terry Branstad, U.S. Ambassador to China. Discussion focused on U.S.-China cooperation on health, opportunity for private and public sector collaboration, and how the partnership between the U.S. and China should meet the mutual interests of both nations.
On Monday, August 21, Secretary Price visited the National Cancer Center, part of the Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences. There the Secretary toured the Center’s operating room facilities and participated in a meeting with Dr. Jie He, President of the National Cancer Center; Terry Branstad, U.S. Ambassador to China; Dr. Ted Trimble, Director of the Center for Global Health at the U.S. National Cancer Institute, a component of HHS, as well as physicians and other healthcare providers that were in attendance. Discussions focused on the need for increased collaboration between the United States and China in cancer research and treatments. Secretary Price confirmed the importance of sharing data and training best practices between our two nations – including in the area of clinical trials – and noted that the world is on the cusp of exciting breakthroughs and opportunities for greater success in the fight against cancer.
Later in the morning, Secretary Price attended a bilateral meeting with China’s Minister of the National Health and Family Planning Commission, Li Bin. The two discussed how to build upon the U.S. and China’s nearly forty years of working together on health – in particular in the areas of global health security and building up capacity to address common threats like influenza. Secretary Price reiterated the United States’ strong support for the Global Health Security Agenda and encouraged China to increase its involvement in this initiative.
Secretary Price stopped by offices of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to greet CDC staff working in China to prepare for, prevent, and respond to infectious diseases. Secretary Price then participated in a roundtable hosted by the World Health Organization (WHO) on the topic of preparing for the next pandemic, with a special emphasis on One Health – the interface between animals and humans and infectious disease threats. On the panel with the Secretary was Dr. George F. Gao, Director General of the China Center for Disease Control and Prevention, and Dr. Bernhard Schwartlander, WHO Representative in China. During the discussion, Secretary Price highlighted the work of HHS personnel in China and around the world and punctuated the importance of building up preparedness capabilities – noting that "bugs are smart" and infectious diseases do not respect borders. He praised the progress that has been made in combatting the spread of disease while cautioning that more must be done through collaboration and education. He joined his fellow panelists in drawing attention to the challenge of antimicrobial resistance.
Later in the afternoon, Secretary Price met with HHS staff stationed in China to thank them for all they do every day to enhance and protect the health and well-being of the American people, standing on the frontlines to combat the spread of infectious diseases, and building partnerships with nations around the world to advance global health security.
Monday concluded with an industry roundtable focused on how best to encourage innovation and lift undue burdens on health entrepreneurs – including through the harmonization of regulatory structures, so that companies looking to invest in and grow their businesses have greater transparency and predictability.
On Tuesday, August 22, Secretary Price joined China CDC Director General Dr. George F. Gao at the offices of the China Center for Disease Control and Prevention. Their meeting continued to highlight the need for communication and collaboration between the United States and China – particularly in the areas of data sharing, increasing transparency, combatting influenza, supporting preparedness and response to infectious diseases in Africa, and HIV prevention and control.