The event, to last until Thursday, will be attended by around 400 representatives from all 53 WHO European region countries, including 16 health ministers. Participants will be welcomed by Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaitė and Mary, Crown Princess of Denmark. The session will be chaired by Lithuanian Health Minister Rimantė Šalaševičiūtė.
“The WHO considers Lithuania a modern country and particularly it has policy development. We always use Lithuanian experience. Lithuania has been a model for us in this regard (…). There are many Lithuanian experts who have significantly contributed the WHO both in the field of NCD’s – chronic non communicable diseases, but also in the field of health information, health indicators and health statistics. It was not by chance that Lithuania was selected as the host country for the regional committee. This was a joint decision,” WHO Regional Director Dr Zsuzsanna Jakab said.
The session will focus on physical activity, anti-smoking action and treatment of drug-resistant tuberculosis. Participants will also discuss migration-related challenges in Europe, women’s health problems, the link between education and social policy and health, the WHO governance reform, the humanitarian crisis and inter-institutional cooperation in the region.
Lithuania is the first Baltic state to host a session of the WHO Regional Committee for Europe.
Lithuania became a full member of the WHO in November 1991 and the WHO Country Office in Lithuania was established in 1994.