Remarks by Ms. Nancy Eslick, Mission Director, USAID/Cambodia, EQHA COVID-19 Response Support Closing Event

Speeches Shim

Tuesday, September 28, 2021

(as prepared for delivery)


  • Your Excellency, Dr. Hok Kim Cheng, Director General for Health of the Ministry of Health
  • Your Excellency, Dr. Ly Sovann, Director of Communicable Diseases Control Department
  • Dr. Sok Srun (SOK SROON), Director of Hospital Services Department
  • Your Excellencies Provincial Health Directors
  • Dr. Nilufar Rakhmanova, Chief of Party, EQHA
  • Representatives from all health partners including UN, international NGOs, and civil society organizations
  • Distinguished guests, ladies, and gentlemen

I’m delighted to join you today to celebrate the accomplishments of the USAID-supported EQHA work in collaboration with the Royal Government of Cambodia and other partners to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic.  The U.S. government is proud of our long history of productive cooperation with Cambodia to strengthen health systems and improve the quality of the country’s health services.  Together we strive to improve maternal and child health, eradicate malaria, prevent and treat HIV, improve nutrition for mothers and children, and expand access to TB screening and treatment.  Most recently, we’ve worked together to tackle infectious disease emergencies such as COVID-19.  Today, we celebrate the joint efforts and accomplishments of EQHA and the Ministry of Health in this response.

In order to accomplish these results, our EQHA project and the Ministry of Health have cooperated at the national, sub-national and community levels in several ways.  I would like to cite a few of these for you today.

At the national level, USAID support has enabled EQHA to work with the Department of Hospital Services on diagnostics and treatment guidelines and an oxygen ecosystem assessment.  Our joint efforts have assisted the Department of Communicable Diseases Control to establish new Influenza-Like Illness surveillance sites in two provinces, and expand screening and contact tracing capacity.  These are important interventions that will strengthen Cambodia’s response to this and future pandemic threats.

At the sub-national level, EQHA has joined with Provincial Health Departments to strengthen infection prevention and control by training a core of physicians and nurses.  EQHA also procured vital supplies such as personal protective equipment, screening materials, medical oxygen equipment, and video conferencing systems to improve distance information sharing among hospitals.  Being able to communicate and interact virtually is the new normal and equipping Cambodia’s health facilities to operate under these conditions is a top priority.

At the community level - where we hope our combined efforts have the most effect - EQHA works with civil society to disseminate information on how citizens can protect themselves from infection.  By equipping communities with this information, we are able to empower them to take ownership of their own COVID-19 protection efforts.

Over the past two years, Cambodia’s COVID-19 response has been supported by many donors, the United Nations family, the Ministry of Health, and each of you here today.   I am so pleased that the U.S., through EQHA and many other implementers, has been such an important part of these efforts.  But our work does not stop here.  On behalf of USAID and our partners, I assure you that USAID stands firm in its commitment - not only to help the kingdom defeat COVID-19 - but to strengthen the healthcare system and improve public health services for all Cambodians.

Thank you.

Issuing Country 

Last updated: December 27, 2021

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