(MENAFN - Muscat Daily) The Ministry of Health (MoH) is planning to set up a health centre for every residential pocket having a population of 10,000 and above. ''But that does not mean that areas with lesser population won't have a health centre,'' said H E Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Obaid al Saeedi, Minster of Health, while speaking to the media on the concluding day of the 60th session of the WHO Regional Committee for Eastern Mediterranean Region, at Shangri-La Barr Al Jissah Resort & Spa.
He said the main aim of MoH is to deliver health services even to the remotest areas, and there are already health centres which serve areas with a population density of less than 10,000.''
Talking about achievements in the health sector, he said that Omanisation for assisstive medial jobs has reached around 65 per cent, but for doctors the percentage has not crossed 30.
Meanwhile, the meeting declared the spread of wild poliovirus an emergency for all member states and reiterated the ongoing emergency situation of endemic poliomyelitis in Pakistan.
''We have decided to declare an emergency on polio across Eastern Mediterranean countries after discovering new cases in Somalia and recently in Syria,'' said Dr Alaa Eddin al Alwan, WHO regional director for Eastern Mediterranean.
''Unfortunately, the world's efforts in getting rid of poliovirus were always shattered by the spread of this virus in mainly at three countries of which two “ Pakistan and Afghanistan - are from the Eastern Mediterranean region,'' he said. Pakistan has been requested to ensure all children in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas are accessed and vaccinated to prevent further international spread.
Member states were asked to extend all possible support to Afghanistan, Pakistan, Somalia and Syria to access children who are currently unreached by polio vaccination, enhance surveillance for acute flaccid paralysis (AFP) and suspected poliomyelitis to detect missed chains of transmission in the region and better target emergency efforts.
Middle-income countries were told they could opt for the pooled vaccine procurement system and sign a memorandum of understanding with WHO and UNICEF to complete the participation process by March 2014.
The meeting also urged member states to set ambitious annual HIV testing and treatment targets.
It was also decided to establish a robust antimicrobial resistance surveillance system, to ensure enforcement of rules and regulations for rational use of antimicrobials at all lev