Speech

Mr. Speaker, the last six months have seen a major transformation in the world. It is a transformation so dramatic that even now, countries are struggling to define what the new normal will look like, as they adjust to the changes brought on by COVID-19.

To define that new normal, we must answer the following questions:

– ‘What is our personal responsibility?’
– ‘How are we to live in communities?’
– ‘How should we raise our children?’
– ‘How do we, in business, serve our employees and customers?’

And all in the context of increased awareness of infection prevention and control.

If nothing else, one answer is clear, Mr. Speaker: we all have a role to play in ensuring individual and community health. Every ONE Counts.

Mr. Speaker, the world has been reminded that without the protection of the good health of our people, there can be no real or sustainable development.

Indeed, COVID-19 has realigned the development thinking and must result in a paradigm shift that brings about ‘Health in All policies’ as a clear direction for joined-up Government.

‘Health in All policies’, as the World Health Organisation (WHO) tells us, is an approach that systematically mainstreams health considerations, and includes a focus on the impact of public policy, not only on health systems, but also on the social determinants of health. In other words, all of us have a role to play and both government and the people must rise to the occasion to protect ourselves and our communities.

 

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