CHA Urges President Trump to Reconsider Decision to Withdraw from the World Health Organization (WHO)

For Immediate Release
June 22, 2020
Contact: Brian Reardon

Statement by Sr. Mary Haddad, RSM, President and CEO, Catholic Health Association of the United States

WASHINGTON, DC – The Catholic Health Association of the United States (CHA) has written President Donald Trump urging that he reconsider the decision to withdraw from the World Health Organization (WHO). While CHA agrees that reforming and strengthening the WHO is necessary to help it fulfill its mandate, withdrawing from the organization during COVID-19 is counterproductive and only ensures that the U.S. will have little influence in efforts to address this worldwide pandemic.

Throughout the history of this country, Catholic health providers have been at the forefront responding to global pandemics. In response to COVID-19, our members have cared for some of the first patients impacted by the virus and have led efforts in our communities to create new isolation units and testing areas, deploy virtual technology, and acquire unprecedented amounts of critical care machines and personal protective equipment to treat the most seriously ill coronavirus patients. CHA supports our members, partnering organizations, and the church in a global mission of healing through research, education, consultation and collaboration. Through our international outreach programs, we are assisting organizations in other regions of the world looking for information and resources on how best to prepare and respond to COVID-19.

Thanks in part to global cooperation through the WHO, our nation and the world have been able to combat Ebola, smallpox, polio, rubella, measles, bird flu, HIV/AIDS and wide variety of communicable and noncommunicable diseases. The success of these efforts has not only saved lives around the world, but also saved millions of lives here in the United States.

We urge the Administration to work with Congress and other countries to develop a long-term strategy to support the work of the WHO. The leadership of the United States is essential to helping coordinate responses to current and future global health crises. Now is the time to stand in solidarity with those in need around the world to save lives and provide hope.

» Download a PDF version of the statement
» CHA Letter to the President Regarding WHO Withdrawal


The Catholic Health Association of the United States is the national leadership organization of the Catholic health ministry, representing the largest nonprofit provider of health care services in the nation.

  • 1 in 7 patients in the U.S. is cared for in a Catholic hospital each day.
  • Catholic health care, which includes more than 2,200 hospitals, nursing homes, long-term care facilities, systems, sponsors, and related organizations, serves the full continuum of health care across our nation.
  • Learn more at

Media Contact

For specific media assistance, please contact Brian Reardon, Vice President, Communications and Marketing.

Media Resources