September 16, 2019
 In 2023-Climate Change and Public Health

Country: Venezuela
Delegate Name: Maddox Podmokly

Delegate name: Maddox Podmokly
Submitted To: WHO
From: The Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela
Subject: Pandemic Preparedness and Prevention

In the growing world of ever-increasing globalization, urbanization, and climate change, the COVID-19 pandemic was the tip of the iceberg, revealing the state of the preparedness of the international community. The world was stuck in lockdown, waiting for the release of the vaccine. This shows how the lockdown saved countless lives, but the international community was unprepared for an event such as the COVID-19 pandemic. This devastated economies, leaving governments weak and unprepared to deal with the impacts of a turbulent economy.
While the pandemic crossed the world at a startlingly rapid pace, the pandemic not only caused tremendous loss of life, but a sizeable impact on countries’ economies. The pandemic ruined trade, disrupting the oil market (Venezuela’s largest domestic export), which caused a drastic decrease in our economy, only exacerbating the agricultural crisis. Assistance from the UN has been minimal, however, it is unnecessary as Venezuela already has just under half its population vaccinated. This economic strife has caused Venezuela to suffer from a devastating hunger crisis displacing more than 7.7 million people.
Venezuela is currently in a renewable 60-day state of emergency, calling upon government and military support to assist with the economic and humanitarian crisis. This has caused tensions in our government as opposing parties have been attempting to use the pandemic and the economic crisis to remove President Nicolás Maduro from office. Venezuela has suffered from a lack of preparation for the pandemic and is struggling to provide healthcare and humanitarian aid funding across the country. Venezuela is currently relying on a $700 million relief fund from the UN to help support healthcare facilities. Furthermore, this is negatively impacted by the situation of unrest in our government from opposing parties attempting to delegitimize election results. Venezuela has called for $795 million in aid to help with food security, healthcare, emergency shelters, education, and water sanitation. This aid has been given by the UN to help support individuals struggling with poverty, malnutrition, shelter, and lack of healthcare. Pandemic preparedness has not been at the forefront of Venezuela’s priorities as there are more pressing concerns with current humanitarian issues, and the effect of the pandemic was not as devastating to the people as it was to the economy. However, pandemic preparedness should remain at the forefront of solving these humanitarian issues. If we do not solve these issues and suffer another pandemic, we will be risking further lives and economic loss. Venezuela has embraced the US dollar to help combat its economic crisis, though this has not been very effective as individuals continue to struggle with money from a lack of small bills.
Venezuela calls for more aid to fund its facilities for increased capacities and supplies. This would be funding for hot meals, medical supplies, clean water, shelter, and direct money for struggling individuals. This humanitarian aid would go to individuals who could not support themselves, assisting with medical, food, and shelter payments. This aid would help us with current issues in our healthcare, leading to better preparation in case of another outbreak. This aid would also help ease tensions within our government as many controversies surround the support of people who have felt the need to leave Venezuela based on lack of support. This will help Venezuela here and now, as Venezuela is currently in no position to prepare for a pandemic with its current hardships.

-Charles, Sarah. “The United States Announces Nearly $376 Million in Additional Humanitarian Assistance for People Affected by the Ongoing Crisis in Venezuela and the Region: Press Release.” U.S. Agency for International Development, 21 Dec. 2022.
-Crisis, Venezuelan. “Venezuelan Humanitarian and Refugee Crisis – CDP.” Center for Disaster Philanthropy, 18 Sept. 2023.
-Morales, Cristian. “Appeal – Venezuela.” World Health Organization, World Health Organization, 2023.
-Otis, John. “The U.S. Predicted His Downfall, but Maduro Strengthens His Grip on Power in Venezuela.” NPR, NPR, 8 Dec. 2021.

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