WHO chief urges countries to be better prepared for next pandemic

United News of Bangladesh . Dhaka | Published: 13:36, Sep 08,2020


World Health Organisation chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. -- UNB photo

World Health Organisation chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus on Monday called on countries to invest in public health and said the world must be better prepared for the next pandemic.

‘This will not be the last pandemic,’ he warned.

At a news conference in Geneva, he said history taught us that outbreaks and pandemics were a fact of life. ‘But when the next pandemic comes, the world must be ready — more ready than it was this time,’ he said, according to a WHO statement.

COVID-19 is teaching all of us many lessons. One of them is that health is not a luxury item for those who can afford it; it’s a necessity, and a human right. Public health is the foundation of social, economic and political stability. That means investing in population-based services for preventing, detecting and responding to disease, he said.

In recent years, many countries have made enormous advances in medicine, but too many have neglected their basic public health systems, which are the foundation for responding to infectious disease outbreaks.

Part of every country’s commitment to building back better must therefore be to invest in public health, as an investment in a healthier and safer future, said the WHO chief.

Many countries had done well because they learned lessons from previous outbreaks of SARS, MERS, measles, polio, Ebola, flu and other diseases, said Tedros.

The global COVID-19 death toll has been reached to 891,240, according to the latest tally from the John Hopkins University.

Besides, the number of confirmed coronavirus cases has recorded 27,254,716.

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