WHO chief warns that COVID-19 won’t be the world’s last pandemic as he tells countries to prepare for future emergencies

World
Health Organization Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus
attends a news conference amid the COVID-19 outbreak at the WHO
headquarters in Geneva Switzerland.
Fabrice Coffrini/Pool via REUTERS

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World Health Organization Director-General Tedros Adhanom
Ghebreyesus warned that COVID-19 won’t be the world’s last
pandemic while speaking in a video statement on the first

International Day of Epidemic Preparedness on Sunday.
Tedros
used his message to encourage countries to prepare better by
working to “prevent, detect, and mitigate emergencies of all
kinds, whether they be naturally occurring epidemics or
deliberate events.”

“History tells us his will not be the last pandemic, and
epidemics are a fact of life,” he said.

He said investments in public health and an “all-of-government,
all-of-society, one health approach” could help countries
successfully react to global health crises in the future.

“If we fail to prepare, we are preparing to fail. … Last year,
the Global Preparedness Monitoring Board published its first
report, which concluded, the world remains dangerously unprepared
for a global pandemic,” he said in the video.

Nearly 1.8 million people across the world have died from
COVID-19 since the pandemic began and more than 80 million people
have tested positive for the virus.

In the United States alone, more than 332,000 people have died
from the virus and more than 19 million have tested positive,
according to Johns
Hopkins.

COVID-19 vaccines are currently being given to healthcare
workers, and are expected to be given to the general public in
2021.

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