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ASH Statement: U.S. Rejoins the World Health Organization

Statement of Laurent Huber, Executive Director of Action on Smoking and Health

Washington, DC – January 21, 2021 – Action on Smoking and Health (ASH) applauds President Biden for rejoining the World Health Organization (WHO), within hours of taking the oath of office. Membership in the WHO is important at any time, but as the world continues to struggle with coronavirus there has never been a more crucial period for the nations of the world to come together. The pittance that the U.S. contributes as a member will be repaid many fold for the health of all Americans and our neighbors around the world.

ASH has been honored to collaborate with the WHO for more than 20 years. The staff at WHO are not faceless bureaucrats focused on pushing paper. They are health professionals confronting the globe’s most pressing health crises, often putting themselves at personal risk to save lives. They are the world’s first responders, and national health organizations, such as the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, rely on the WHO to coordinate global action and act as a “force multiplier” to confront health threats.

ASH looks forward to contributing to and advising the Biden administration on health issues and assisting in maintaining and growing international health connections. The United States is stronger and healthier as participants in the global community.