The Ministry of Health of Azerbaijan held a meeting with the delegation of the WHO Assessment Mission for the Malaria elimination certification process
A meeting was held at the Ministry of Health of Azerbaijan with the delegation of the World Health Organization (WHO), which is in our country, on a working visit from October 3 to 14. The delegation consisted of members of the Technical Advisory Independent Group for Malaria Elimination Certification (TAG-MEC). Hande Harmanci, the head of the WHO representation in Azerbaijan, also participated in the meeting.
During his welcoming speech, the Minister of Health, Dr Teymur Musayev, emphasized that Azerbaijan highly values cooperation with the WHO. According to him, The cooperation between Azerbaijan and WHO has been developing steadily since 1992.
In his speech, the Minister drew attention to the measures implemented to prevent and eliminate the outbreaks of malaria in our country: "For many years, large-scale measures have been implemented in Azerbaijan to prevent and eliminate the outbreaks of malaria. As a result of these efforts, there have been no cases of local malaria infection detected in Azerbaijan since 2013."
Teymur Musayev recalled that at the beginning of the 90s of the last century, due to the deterioration of the socio-political situation, the migration of more than 1 million refugees and internally displaced people resulted in the spread of malaria and covered around 80 per cent of the country's territory: "Regarding the epidemiological situation, according to the recommendations of the World Health Organization, a National Program was developed. As a result of the successful implementation of this program, the spread of the disease was prevented, and the incidence of diseases was significantly reduced."
The Minister emphasized that the elimination of malaria in Azerbaijan was achieved as a result of the strengthening of the national health system and the collaborative work of the Ministry of Health with other ministries and organizations of the republic: "Success in the fight against malaria is also due to the full support of partners, in which the World Health Organization holds a leading position."
Keith Carter, a member of the WHO Evaluation Mission, expressed his gratitude for the warm reception and hospitality and noted the invaluable contribution of Azerbaijan to the elimination of malaria in the region and the preservation of its malaria-free country status. It was reported that in September 2021, the leadership of the Ministry of Health sent an official request to WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus regarding the initiation of the certification process for malaria eradication in Azerbaijan. As part of this process, the WHO certification mission visited Azerbaijan from May 16 to 20, 2022. In June of this year, the Ministry of Health submitted the "National Report on Malaria Elimination in the Republic of Azerbaijan" to the WHO Global Malaria Control Program.
As a result of the Mission's two-week work with the malaria control system and the results of the work accomplished, Azerbaijan is expected to be certified by the World Health Organization as a "malaria-free" country.