Thai Public Health Ministry asks WHO to cancel budget cut for SEA


BANGKOK, 17 January 2013  The Ministry of Public Health is preparing to submit a letter to the World Health Organization (WHO) after countries in Southeast Asia were handed a budget cut of 380 million USD for health promotion and disease prevention. 

Public Health Minister MD Pradit Sinthawanarong has talked with WHO representative to Thailand Dr. Monirul Islam after the organization announced that it would decrease the budget for Southeast Asia by 11% or 380 million USD from 2014-2015. The minister said he would ask the WHO director-general in written words to stop the budget cut this Friday, in time for the 132nd session of the WHO executive board meeting from 21-29 January 2013 in Geneva.

MD Pradit pointed out that the budget should not be lowered as most member countries in Southeast Asia were poor and underdeveloped in terms of medicine and public health. Although the budget cut would not affect Thailand much, he said the letter would be submitted to the WHO director-general to show the country’s stance and unity of Southeast Asian countries.