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New York, 20 September 2011

Mr. Secretary-General, Excellencies, ladies and gentlemen,

It is a great pleasure to be with all of you today in my capacity as the President of the 66th session of the General Assembly, and as a strong supporter of women’s and children’s health.

This has already been an historic week for global health and it is only Tuesday afternoon.  Member States have demonstrated their concern for the health of women and children during the High-level Meeting on NCDs held over the past two days. 

Today, it is very encouraging to see so many of you here to discuss the successes of the first year of the Every Woman, Every Child effort, and to learn from one another in order to advance your work in year two.  In this increasingly interconnected world we are seeing how women and children are at the heart of our ability to achieve lasting success in development and to create a stable prosperous global community.

In the past, Member States and the United Nations have often worked on individual health concerns such as HIV/AIDS or malaria.  Today, you are demonstrating that by putting women and children at the center, our health policies and programs can be streamlined and strengthened.  The secret of Every Woman, Every Child’s success is that the barriers to quality, accessible and affordable health are tackled holistically with the recognition that everyone has a role to play. 

This effort represents the very heart of what is best and achievable through our United Nations family.  Over the next year, I look forward to working with the Member States, the Secretary-General, civil society, the private sector, health professionals and the research community to continue the great strides towards meeting the MDGs.  Let us be renewed by what we have seen today and reenergized to focus on the women and children that are still in need.

Thank you.



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