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WHO affirms ongoing health support to Cook Islands

Tuesday 27 February 2024 | Written by Supplied | Published in Health, National


WHO affirms ongoing health support to Cook Islands
From left, Secretary of Foreign Affairs and Immigration Tepaeru Herrmann, World Health Organisation Representative to the Cook Islands Dr Kim Dickson, and Director of Treaties, Multilateral and Oceans Division Sandrina Thondoo. MFAI/24022623

World Health Organisation (WHO) Representative to the Cook Islands Dr. Kim Dickson reaffirmed the world governing body’s support to the Cook Islands in a meeting with Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Immigration (MFAI) Tepaeru Herrmann last week.

According to MFAI, Dr Dickson and her delegation were in Rarotonga at the request of Te Marae Ora (TMO) Ministry of Health to provide technical support for health-related legislative reviews and development relating to the Tobacco Control Act, the Narcotics Act and the Public Health Act. 

Dr Dickson, who presented her letters of credence to the Cook Islands Government in June 2022, heads WHO’s mission in Apia, Samoa. Since 2019, WHO’s Office in Samoa have partnered with TMO to review various Cook Islands public health related legislation, some dating back to the 1960s. 

WHO also continues to provide various other technical support to the Cook Islands through TMO including health workforce development and training and public health policy development and awareness raising, including as relate to non-communicable diseases, MFAI said.

In a statement, Herrmann said: “The Cook Islands has been a member of the WHO since the 9 May 1984 and this year marks 40 years of partnership and co-operation between the Cook Islands and the WHO.”

“Ensuring and supporting the health and well-being of our people, through the leadership of TMO, has only been possible with the partnership arrangements we have with the WHO and various other bilateral, regional and multilateral partners.

“We therefore welcome this in person and in-country engagement opportunity with Dr Dickson to review current co-operation arrangements and explore possible additional other areas of co-operation, including strengthening our NCD preventative and control capabilities which requires whole-of-government and whole-of-society efforts working in partnership with our international partners, including the WHO.”