Speech by the United Nations Resident Coordinator, Roy Trivedy: National Health Day 2022 [EN/Tetum] – East Timor


July 22, 2022 Municipality of Ainaro

Your Excellency, Prime Minister, Hon. Taur Matan Ruak
Your Excellency, Deputy Prime Minister, Hon. Armanda Berta Dos Santos
Your Excellency, Minister of Health, Dra Odete Maria Freitas Belo
President Authority, Heads of Sucos, Representatives of Veterans, Rede Feto, Rede Jovens
Director General of Health Services at the Ministry of Health, Dra Odete Da Silva Viegas
Director General of Cooperative Services at the Ministry of Health, Snr. Marcelo Amaral, SA
National Directors at the Ministry of Health
Your Excellencies, Ambassadors and the diplomatic corps
Civil society representatives
WHO Representative, Dr Arvind Mathur and all UN colleagues,
media representatives,
Ladies and gentlemen

Bom dia and a very good morning

I am happy to be here today in Ainaro to participate in the National Health Day 2022 celebrations.

My congratulations to the people and government of Timor-Leste and all health service providers who have been our heroes for all health-related achievements, including the successful response to COVID-19!

Let me start by asking everyone a question: why is health important?

Good health is the most essential and precious part of life. We never realize its real value until we lose it. I believe that ensuring healthy lives and promoting well-being for all is important to building prosperous societies and essential to building healthy communities and economies. When we are well, it is easier for us to deal with many of the difficulties that we all face.

My second question is: who is responsible for our health?

I believe that the primary responsibility for taking care of our health rests with ourselves and our respective families.

We owe it to ourselves, our families and our communities to take all necessary measures to protect ourselves and others from disease. We can all achieve this by making sure we eat a well-balanced diet, get good sleep and rest, take care of our environment and keep things around us clean and clean. exercise regularly.

We all know that despite all the care we take, we will all at some point in our lives need help from the authorities and in particular from health service providers.

We must ensure that children, mothers and families have access to health care and other services and are safe from violence in homes, schools and communities.

Today, on this National Health Day, I encourage all of us to pay attention to our health and the health and well-being of others. Regular exercise. Do not smoke. Have a healthy diet. Limit alcohol consumption. Maintain healthy lifestyles and maintain good hygiene and sanitation practices and try to maintain a healthy weight.

Ladies and gentlemen,

This National Health Day has taken on even greater significance in the wake of COVID19, which has made us fully aware of the importance of a robust healthcare system. COVID-19 is a powerful demonstration that everything is in danger when health is at stake.

Timor-Leste can be proud of its achievements in the area of ​​health, particularly neonatal, child, adolescent and maternal health. The United Nations system is proud to have played an important role in helping the Government of Timor-Leste achieve progress for children, women and families. However, despite many achievements, we all need to do more to ensure that every child, mother and person living in Timor-Leste has good access to the best health care we can provide.

This is essential for building a healthy society and economy and achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. And it’s not just about improving health services. It is about policies and actions. We need to address the broader determinants of health, including social, economic and environmental factors.

Dear friends,

There is an urgent need to invest more in health professionals. We need highly qualified and skilled health workers. We need empowered people who know how to care for their health and their families by promoting and practicing good health and well-being. And we need communities to have access to healthcare when and where they need it. We must also emphasize the importance of mental health, so often stigmatized and forgotten.

The United Nations will continue to support the Ministry of Health and the government in achieving these goals for every person in Timor-Leste.

I want to thank everyone who has taken the COVID-19 vaccine and is fully immunized against the disease and those who have taken their booster shots. I urge anyone who is eligible to go to the nearest health facility or outreach center and get vaccinated against COVID-19.

COVID-19 remains a threat to everyone, especially vulnerable people, children who are not yet eligible for vaccination and those who cannot be vaccinated for medical reasons. We also know dengue is another threat – so we need to make sure we don’t have standing water near our homes so mosquitoes don’t breed.

I thank you. Long live Ainaro! Long live East Timor! Obrigadou barak.

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