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India, South-east Asian countries to set up fund for health emergencies in region

India along with 10 other member countries of World Health Organisation’s (WHO’s) South-East Asian Regional Committee has decided to set up a dedicated fund aimed at building preparedness for health emergencies in the region. 
•    Decision in this regard was taken at the 69th session of WHO Regional Committee Meeting held at Colombo, capital of Sri Lanka. 
•    The joint funding stream will be established under the South-East Asia Regional Health Emergency Fund (SEARHEF). 
•    The new funding stream will allow these countries to invest in infrastructure and human resources that will enhance preparedness. 
•    The Regional Committee is WHO South-East Asia Region’s highest decision-making body. 
•    It comprises 11 countries – Bangladesh, South Korea, Bhutan, India, Indonesia, Maldives, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Thailand and Timor-Leste. 
•    It has also been threatened by a range of emerging diseases, including SARS, MERS CoV, pandemic influenza and Zika virus. 

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