EU and WHO/Europe join forces to support deployment of COVID-19 vaccines and vaccination in Armenia

The European Union and the WHO Regional Office for Europe will work together in a major effort to support the deployment of COVID-19 vaccines and vaccination in Armenia. The project funded by the European Union and implemented by WHO will cover all phases – constituting “end-to-end” support – of COVID-19 vaccine deployment and vaccination and will serve as a major investment to strengthen the routine immunisation system.

The project will be implemented by WHO over a three-year period as part of a €40 million European Union-funded initiative to support six countries in the WHO European Region in preparing, deploying and monitoring rollout of COVID-19 vaccines.

“Vaccines bring us closer towards the end of the pandemic. However, we will never beat the pandemic if the vaccination coverage concentrates only in certain parts of the world. The European Union stands by Armenia also during the process of vaccination to ensure we soon can meet together without the fear for lives of ourselves and our close ones. Together, we will beat this pandemic faster,” said the Ambassador of the European Union to Armenia, Andrea Wiktorin.

“COVID-19 knows no borders; it unites and demands united solutions. It is noteworthy that the solidarity principle made the world stand together to fight this calamity in unity. The long-lasting cooperation and the continuity of common projects between the Ministry of Health of the Republic of Armenia, the European Union and the World Health Organization is a valid proof for this. Throughout the pandemic, our country faced yet another challenge. The disastrous war was a serious ordeal not only for the state but also for the healthcare system. Despite WHO’s urges to end the war, Armenia was forced to go through a 44-days long hell. Nevertheless, during the intensification of the pandemic and the war, Armenia has always felt the results of the strong support and cooperation. Even today, our colleagues are standing strong next to us and are willing to assist in the process of procuring vaccines. We are full of hope that “Health and Peace” joint initiative will help member states endure all the challenges that this pandemic has posed,” said Anahit Avanesyan, RA Minister of Health.

Egor Zaitsev, the WHO Representative and Head of the WHO Country Office in Armenia, said: “Vaccines offer hope and protection to those fighting on the frontlines of this pandemic and to those at highest risk living in fear of its devastating impact. Thanks to this generous support, WHO can strengthen its collaboration with the Government of Armenia to ensure that vaccines can reach those who need them most, as soon and as efficiently as possible.”

The funds will be used initially to support the first phase of preparedness and deployment, with an emphasis on imminent needs in strategic programmatic areas such as planning, equipment/supplies, training of health workers and information campaigns.  

The project builds on the European Union’s and WHO’s ongoing support to countries’ response to the COVID-19 pandemic, including the joint €35 million EU Solidarity for Health Initiative, aimed to support the partner countries in their fight against the virus and address better the needs of the most vulnerable people.

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