The Philippine Government, through the Department of Health (DOH), today conferred the Order of the Golden Heart upon Dr. Rabindra Abeyasinghe, World Health Organization (WHO) Representative to the Philippines.

For almost three years of being the WHO Representative to the Philippines, Dr. Abeyasinghe has immensely contributed to ushering health initiatives and achieving milestones in the country’s health system. The WHO aided the Philippines in its fight against polio through the provision of both technical and operational support in intensifying polio surveillance which resulted in the closure of the polio outbreak on 3 June 2021.

Dr. Abeyasinghe has also supported the Philippines in its pursuit of Universal Health Care (UHC), ensuring that other health concerns are not neglected while the country responds to the unprecedented effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“It was an honor working with an inspiring and dedicated WHO country representative amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. With the tireless support of Dr. Abeyasinghe, the Philippine government was commended by the WHO Director-General for swiftly executing redoubling efforts in strengthening routine immunization of children. We thank Dr. Abeyasinghe for his dedication in ensuring Filipinos achieve better health outcomes,” said Health Secretary Francisco T. Duque III.

The Order of the Golden Heart is given to organizations or individuals who have greatly contributed to the social, economic, and moral improvement of society.

Dr. Abeyasinghe will end his tour of duty and is set to leave the country on 22 January 2022.