Press Release

‘We Stand with You’: UN Secretary-General's Message on World Health Day 2020

07 April 2020

This World Health Day, the UN Secretary-General, Mr António Guterres, hails care-workers around the globe for their tireless commitment and expertise during this traumatic time.

World Health Day this year comes at a very difficult time for all of us.  My message today is to our health‑care workers — the nurses, midwives, technicians, paramedics, pharmacists, doctors, drivers, cleaners, administrators and many others — who work, day and night to keep us safe.

Today, we are more deeply grateful than ever to all of you, as you work, around the clock, putting yourselves at risk, to fight the ravages of this pandemic.  2020 is the International Year of the Nurse and the Midwife, and I want to recognize their specific expertise and commitment.

We have all had reason to give thanks for the care and professionalism of nurses and midwives.  I know I do.  Nurses shoulder some of the biggest health‑care burdens.  They perform difficult work and endure long hours, while risking injury, infection and the mental health burden that accompanies such traumatic work.  They often provide comfort at the end of life.

Midwives provide comfort at the beginning of life.  During a pandemic, their work is even more challenging, as you bring our newborns safely into this world.

To the nurses and midwives of the world:  thank you for your work.

In these traumatic times, I say to all health care workers:  We stand with you and we count on you.  You make us proud; you inspire us.  We are indebted to you.  Thank you for the difference you are making, every day and everywhere.

‘We Stand with You’: UN Secretary-General's Message on World Health Day 2020

Mr António Guterres


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