WASHINGTON (AP)– U.S. Health Secretary Alex Azar stated Friday he wishes to find out about Taiwan’s “exceptionally effective” response to the cornavirus even though the island did things that the U.S. has fumbled, such as having actually an unified method and residents willing to use masks.
Azar leads a U.S. delegation leaving this weekend for a three-day check out to Taiwan, where they will meet President Tsai Ing-wen and health system leaders, and Azar will provide a speech to public health graduates. The journey is a geopolitical chess relocation in the Trump administration’s contentious relationship with China, which thinks about Taiwan part of its nationwide area and has already registered its displeasure.
” The message of this journey is about Taiwan,” Azar said in an interview, deflecting a concern about China. “It’s about public health, it has to do with our collaboration with Taiwan, however likewise the design that Taiwan uses to the world neighborhood of a transparent and open health care system. It is a model others can learn from.”
He called Taiwan’s coronavirus response “extremely effective” and stated he’s willing to “learn from them about their reactions.”
It’s not far too late, states a leading expert on Taiwan’s healthcare system, Princeton University’s Tsung-Mei Cheng.
” It will be excellent if our health chief can gain from Taiwan, how exactly they did it,” stated Cheng. “It’s actually a gold mine of very useful details as to how you could successfully control and consist of the spread of the infection.”
Taiwan had direct experience with an earlier respiratory infection known as SARS, so it did not take the new coronavirus gently. A government-run healthcare system– broadly similar to what Sen. Bernie Sanders supporters– allowed public health authorities to set in motion resources to track and contain cases. Citizens were willing to follow public health recommendations.
As a result Taiwan has had less than 500 confirmed cases of COVID-19, regardless of its close distance to China, where the infection stemmed. Florida, which has roughly the same number of locals as Taiwan, has had more than 500,000 cases and is struggling to contain this summer’s rise.
Taiwan “set the policy right and they had the infrastructure and the management,” said Cheng. “I can not emphasize enough the significance of management.”
In the U.S., President Donald Trump reduced the prospective effect of the coronavirus at the outset, and has continued to do so from time to time. The federal government accepted the states on essential issues such as screening, even as public health experts and Democrats in Congress have actually required a nationwide plan.
Azar, while applauding Taiwan, stated the U.S. is handling “extremely different” circumstances.
” They are an island with 23 million people that also experienced SARS rather straight,” he said. The U.S. is one of the world’s biggest land mass nations, he added, with a federal system that gives states great freedom, and customs of specific liberty.
Like other administration authorities, Azar says Trump acted rapidly to attempt to include the virus by enforcing restrictions on travel from China, and he indicates the government’s drive to help with development and ultimate circulation vaccines as direct evidence of the U.S. president’s commitment.
Also on the agenda for the journey is trade as the U.S. tries to widen its sources for medical products, many of which have been produced in China.
American Cabinet-rank officials have traveled to Taiwan in previous administrations, however Azar’s trip is billed as the highest-level visit considering that Washington and Taipei broke official diplomatic relations in 1979 as an effect of U.S. rapprochement with China. The U.S. is represented in Taiwan by an institute that acts as an embassy in all but name.
Members of the U.S. delegation will use masks and observe social distancing precautions. They’ll be tested for the coronavirus before they depart, once they land in Taiwan, and prior to they return.
” This is a visit to strengthen the U.S.-Taiwan collaboration in worldwide health and health security,” stated Azar. “Taiwan is a leader in worldwide health and I think it is worthy of to be recognized as such.”