WHO Spokesperson Addresses Health, Medical Needs For Libya On PBS NewsHour

The WHO “is rushing to secure medical supplies for Libya” after the Dutch government on Monday released nearly $145 million in frozen assets from Libyan leader Moammar Qaddafi’s regime in response to a direct WHO appeal, PBS NewsHour reports.  The news service features an interview with Tarik Jasarevic, WHO spokesperson for medical emergencies, who spoke “about the health needs in Libya and how the funds will be used.”

Since violent conflict began in February, “the health system has managed to prevent disease outbreaks and maintain a high level of immunization” but now “stocks of vaccines, insulin, chemotherapy, laboratory consumables and HIV drugs are really running short and some of them by the end of September will no longer be available,” Jasarevic said. He added that some supplies may take up to three months to reach the country, and though WHO will respond immediately by “sending pre-positioned medical kits, … these kits do not contain some very important medicines, so we are really now racing against time” (Miller, 8/18).