Report: Top official says European governments are working with US to overhaul WHO

Report: Top official says European governments are working with US to overhaul WHO
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The U.S. and several of its European allies are working together on plans to significantly restructure the World Health Organization (WHO), a top European health official told Reuters.

The official told the wire service that France, Germany, Italy and the United Kingdom were in talks with the U.S. to reform the organization at an operational level.

According to the official, all involved countries have concerns that the WHO is too close to China's sphere of influence. 

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“We are discussing ways to separate WHO’s emergency management mechanism from any single country influence,” the official told Reuters.

One proposed point of change would be to make the WHO's funding system more long-term, per the official. At the moment, the WHO runs on a two-year budget. If the WHO ever needed to raise money because of an emergency, the official said, it “could hurt WHO’s independence."

President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump suggests some states may 'pay nothing' as part of unemployment plan Trump denies White House asked about adding him to Mount Rushmore Trump, US face pivotal UN vote on Iran MORE has been an outspoken critic of the WHO, claiming that the organization has been too close to China during the coronavirus pandemic. The president has announced plans to stop funding to the organizaition.

The U.S. has been the largest funder of the WHO, paying more than 15 percent of its $5.6 billion budget for 2018-19. European countries paid about 11 percent of the budget, while China paid only 0.2 percent.