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COVID-19

David Miliband's coronavirus response update: Apr. 15, 2020

International Rescue Committee president and CEO David Miliband provides a weekly video update on the new coronavirus, COVID-19, and the IRC's response.

Read the full video transcript

Video Transcript

We’re all reading in the media of the pressure on health systems in some of the most advanced, industrialized countries in the world. We’re tracking the hospitalization rate, the daily death toll. We all know the pressure that’s on nursing staff and doctors as well as the wider health community. But if it’s tough to fight COVID in countries with the best health systems, imagine what it’s like where there hardly is a health system to speak of.

Just this week the International Rescue Committee has published a report studying the challenge in four countries that reflect the humanitarian crisis that we’re fighting around the world.South Sudan has just four ventilators for the whole country. In Venezuela, half of the doctors have fled the country. That’s why non-governmental organizations like the International Rescue Committee are so important. Employing local staff to help fight the disease like COVID.

We know that the world will only be safe from this disease when every part of the world gets the preventative work, as well as eventually, the treatments and the vaccine that are necessary. We also know that any chain is only as strong as its weakest link. And that’s why as a matter of interest as well as morality it’s vital that we take the fight against COVID to all corners of the world.

We’ve launched a really wonderful platform this week, refugees.rescue.org, which is designed to ensure that all of the refugee doctors and nurses in America are able to sign up for the global fight against the disease. I hope that they will make use of it and they will be able to put their skills to work. This is a global fight and we’ve all got to muck in in any way that we can. Thanks very much for listening