“The coronavirus pandemic will not be the last”, declared World Health Organization (WHO) chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. In a video message, marking the first International Day of Epidemic Preparedness, Ghebreyesus condemned the “dangerously short-sighted” cycle of throwing cash at outbreaks but doing nothing to prepare for the next one.
“We throw money at an outbreak, and when it’s over, we forget about it and do nothing to prevent the next one. This is dangerously short-sighted, and frankly difficult to understand,” he said.
“History tells us that this will not be the last pandemic, and epidemics are a fact of life,” he continued.
The chief also expressed that combatting another pandemic cannot be donw without tackling climate change and animal welfare.
“The pandemic has highlighted the intimate links between the health of ” he humans, animals and planet,” he said.
“Any efforts to improve human health are doomed unless they address the critical interface between humans and animals, and the existential threat of climate change that’s making our earth less habitable,” he said.
The novel coronavirus has killed at least 1.75 million people and nearly 80 million cases have been recorded since the outbreak emerged in China last December, according to a tally from official sources compiled by AFP.