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CEO of the Tongan Ministry of Health invited to attend China-Pacific Medical Experts' Vedio Conference on COVID-19

On 10th March 2020, China hosted a medical experts’ video conference on COVID-19 with all the Pacific island countries that have diplomatic relations with China including Tonga. Senior officials from Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Chinese National Health Commission, Chinese medical experts together with more than 100 officials and medical experts from 10 pacific island countries attended the conference online. Dr Siale ‘Aka’ola, CEO of the Tongan Ministry of Health and Dr Reynold Ofanua were invited to attend the conference at the Chinese Embassy.

The Chinese side briefed on the updates about China’s fight against COVID-19, expressed that under the personally command and deployment of President Xi Jinping on the combat against COVID-19, the situation in China is increasingly trending in a positive direction, with production and normal life gradually resumed. President Xi is now in Wuhan City, Hubei Province, the epicenter, to inspect on the prevention and control work. China has full confidence, capability and certainty to win the battle against the epidemic, and is determined to achieve this year's social and economic development goals. Upholding the concept of a community with a shared future for mankind, China has been actively engaged in international cooperation in an open, transparent and highly responsible manner. China and Pacific island countries are both developing countries. China share the same feelings with Pacific island counties facing the special difficulties in epidemic prevention and control, and has provided timely information on COVID-19, taken concrete measures to protect the health and safety of the nationals, including the students, from Pacific island countries in China. China stands ready to join hands with Pacific island countries to enhance information sharing, deepen cooperation on epidemic prevention, work in the spirit of solidarity and unity, and make contributions to regional and global public health security. China will provide necessary support and assistance within its ability to help the Pacific island countries in their fight against COVID-19 according to the situation.

Professor Wu Zunyou, Chief Epidemiologist of the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention and Professor Wang Guiqiang, Dean of the Department of Infectious Diseases of Peking University First Hospital briefed on the etiology, routes of transmission, epidemiological developments, China’s response and clinical treatment and answered questions in detail regarding the viral information, protective measures for medical staff, targeted prevention and control, port of entry screening and quarantine, therapeutic solutions and vaccine development.

Mr. ’Aka’ola spoke highly of the outstanding achievements made by China in fighting against COVID-19 as well as its important contributions to the global public health security. He also said that China’s experiences have set up a high standard and a good model for Pacific island countries to follow. He expressed deep gratitude to China for hosting this video conference and sharing epidemic prevention and control experiences. Tonga will continue to enhance cooperation in epidemic response and work with China to defeat COVID-19.

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