As we enter the third year of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Omicron variant’s rapid spread has had far-reaching impacts around the world, and gaps in the global response hinder our efforts to counter this crisis. Ending the acute phase of the COVID-19 pandemic is a top priority for the United States, but we cannot do this alone.

We know the urgency of this fight. We know what needs to be done to stop the pandemic. Now, we have to do it. Enhanced engagement, better donor coordination, and action-oriented leadership are urgent and essential. A global pandemic requires a global action plan, which is why I will convene a virtual COVID-19 Global Action Meeting on February 14.

This pandemic is not just a health crisis. It is a humanitarian, development, and security crisis as well. Health security is national security, and foreign ministers must play a central role in bringing the acute phase of this pandemic to an end and preparing for the future. My counterparts and leaders from regional and international organizations will discuss the leadership roles and actions we will take under the COVID-19 Global Action Plan (GAP), which builds on President Biden’s Global COVID-19 Summit themes of vaccinating the world, saving lives now, and building better health security.  Specifically, we are asking countries to step up with us to: (1) Get Shots in Arms; (2) Bolster Supply Chain Resilience; (3) Address Information Gaps; (4) Support Health Care Workers; (5) Ensure Acute Non-Vaccine Interventions; and (6) Strengthen the Global Health Security Architecture. We will coordinate responsibility for sectoral, regional, and global leadership in each line of effort, building on the momentum generated by the COVID-19 Summit and continuing regular engagement among foreign ministers to address health security.

Secretary Blinken’s opening remarks will be streamed on at 08:30 EST on February 14, 2022.

U.S. Department of State

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