Kazakhstan Minister of Health proposed to SCO countries to switch to new codes of COVID-19 international classification

Alexey Tsoy took part in the meeting of the ministers of health of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization member states, which was held in the format of a videoconference.

The main agenda of the meeting was the current situation with COVID-19 in the SCO member states and ensuring the safety of the population in a pandemic. Speaking to the participants of the online meeting, the head of the Kazakh Ministry of Health noted that over the past week in Kazakhstan, there has been a tendency towards stabilization of morbidity and mortality from coronavirus infection at the level of 1700-1600 per day.

“In order to ensure maximum transparency of data on cases of COVID-19 and pneumonia, the Ministry of Health has identified new approaches to recording and generating statistical data. Taking into account the technical consultations with the WHO Regional Office for Europe, we have decided to move to coding and recording cases of COVID-19 according to the new codes of the international classification of the disease. Thus, laboratory-confirmed cases of COVID-19 will be combined with cases of pneumonia with a negative PCR test, but with clinical and epidemiological signs of COVID-19. Until now, in Kazakhstan, as in most countries, only laboratory-confirmed cases of COVID-19 are recorded. A complete transition to coding using the new codes of the international classification of the disease will be carried out from August 1, ”said Alexey Tsoy.

He offered to support the WHO recommendations on the transition to coding and recording of COVID-19 cases according to the new codes for the international classification of the disease. According to the minister, this approach will make it possible to make correct predictions of morbidity, adequately plan the necessary resources, medical personnel, beds, medical equipment, medicines, as well as ensure the transparency of statistical data and the ability to study the consequences of the disease with the international community.

“Taking this opportunity, I express my deep gratitude to all countries that have provided humanitarian and practical assistance to the people of Kazakhstan in the fight against COVID-19. Noting the high level of trust and partnership that has developed between the health care systems of our countries, it became obvious that victory over the spreading pandemic is possible only through joint coordinated efforts, ”the minister added.

In addition, he emphasized the role of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization in raising the level and improving the living conditions of the people of the SCO member states, social and cultural development in the region.

“Cooperation within the SCO is distinguished by the spirit of mutual trust, mutual benefit, equality, respect and diversity of cultures, the desire for joint development. The coronavirus epidemic has become a test of the unity and strength of cooperation between the SCO countries; it has demonstrated the key importance of international cooperation, interaction and support in the fight against infection. Since the outbreak of the epidemic, we have been in close contact, exchanging information, coordinating joint actions, providing mutual assistance, ”Aleksey Tsoy addressed the meeting participants.

In order to develop and implement comprehensive measures for prevention, early warning, response and reduction of the negative interaction of epidemiological diseases, during the meeting it was proposed to create a Coordination Council for joint counteraction to the threats of epidemics.

“A draft agreement on cooperation between the SCO member states in the fight against plague is at the stage of approval. A real step in that direction could be the creation of a Coordination Council for joint counteraction against the threat of epidemics in the SCO space to organize operational and systemic interaction of the SCO member states, ”said Vladimir Norov, SCO Secretary General.

Also, following the meeting, a final statement was adopted by the health ministers of  the SCO member states, which noted the need to strengthen coordination in countering the threats of epidemics in the SCO space and to continue making decisive, coordinated and multilateral efforts in the fight against COVID-19.