April 6, 2020
Secretary Azar Statement on World Health Day
HHS Secretary Alex Azar issued the following statement on the occasion of World Health Day, April 7:
"This year's World Health Day comes as the world wages war against a global health challenge without precedent in our era: the COVID-19 pandemic. For years, including under President Trump, the United States has worked to focus global health priorities and the efforts of the World Health Organization on infectious outbreaks that can cross borders. Now, we face a pandemic that has spread to almost every country on earth, costing lives, disrupting societies, and stalling economies.
"On World Health Day, we rededicate ourselves, as an international community and as individual nations, to fighting this pandemic with science-based public health policies. Working together, we will defeat this invisible enemy and our countries will emerge from this crisis stronger for it—knowing that preparing for such crises must always be one of our top global health priorities.
"This year's theme for World Health Day, 'Celebrating Nurses and Midwives,' is also an important reminder of the work being done by frontline healthcare workers every day, around the world, to save lives. Preparing for and responding to outbreaks that can cross borders is one of the most important contributions we can make to support our healthcare workers, and we applaud the heroic work they have been doing to battle the global pandemic."