Scott Morrison has discussed the future of the World Health Organisation with one of its biggest donors.
The prime minister spoke with Bill Gates on Tuesday, just days after the Microsoft founder and philanthropist used a global broadcast organised by Lady Gaga to appeal for support for the embattled global health body.
Mr Morrison and Mr Gates are also understood to have discussed vaccines and the Indo-Pacific's health challenges.
The Gates Foundation is one of the WHO's biggest voluntary donors, providing $836 million over the past two years.
Mr Gates has been publicly critical of a decision by US President Donald Trump to suspend his country's funding for the WHO.
The US is the largest donor to the WHO, providing more than $631 million in 2019 - about 15 per cent of its budget.
"Halting funding for the World Health Organisation during a world health crisis is as dangerous as it sounds," Mr Gates tweeted recently.
"Their work is slowing the spread of COVID-19 and if that work is stopped no other organisation can replace them."
Mr Trump has argued the WHO failed to adequately "obtain, vet and share information" in a timely and transparent way, leaving a global trail of death and destruction.
Mr Morrison recently expressed some sympathy for Mr Trump's criticisms, pointing to the way Australia pre-emptively declared a pandemic before the WHO.
Australia has worked closely with the WHO for more than seven decades.
Australian Associated Press