WHO warns of next pandemic

We must not let our guard down

Published : 24 May 2023 08:02 PM | Updated : 24 May 2023 08:02 PM

Although Covid-19 may no longer be a global public health emergency, countries must still strengthen response to the disease and prepare for future pandemics and other threats, the Director-General of the World Health Organisation (WHO) said on Monday in Geneva.  He also urged countries to carry out reforms needed to prepare for the next pandemic, hailing their “historic” decision to accept a major budget hike at the U.N. agency’s annual assembly.

The 10-day annual World Health Assembly in Geneva, which coincides with the WHO’s 75th anniversary, is set to address global health challenges including future pandemics, eradicating polio and supporting steps to ease Ukraine's health emergency triggered by Russia's invasion.

A commitment from this generation (to a pandemic accord) is important, because it is this generation that experienced how awful a small virus could be. The end of Covid-19 as a global health emergency is not the end of Covid-19 as a global health threat. 

The threat of another variant emerging that causes new surges of disease and death remains, and the threat of another pathogen emerging with even deadlier potential remains. Furthermore, in the face of overlapping and converging crises, “pandemics are far from the only threat people face”.

We believe Bangladesh will be 

able to deal with the next pandemic

 situation successfully and efficiently

When the next pandemic comes knocking – and it will – the member states must be ready to answer decisively, collectively, and equitably. Covid-19 had significant implications for health-related targets under the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which have a deadline of 2030. 

Covid-19 also showed that eight billion people – basically everyone on the planet – need to be better protected in emergencies.  The pandemic has blown us off course, but it has shown us why the SDGs must remain our north star, and why we must pursue them with the same urgency and determination with which we countered the pandemic.

Keeping WHO’s warning in mind, Bangladesh’s health sector will have to be more active and dynamic to tackle any sorts of fatal disease like the Covid-19 pandemic in the days to come. Bangladesh government will also have to establish good governance with innovative strategies and build a vibrant health sector to tackle the next pandemic or Coronavirus-like crisis in the upcoming years in this regard.

Although we have achieved tremendous success in healthcare sector, Covid pandemic exposed some loopholes in the system. Many developed countries have suffered greatly even having highly efficient healthcare systems during the third wave of Covid-19 pandemic, but Bangladesh managed the crisis more efficiently. Therefore, we believe Bangladesh will be able to deal with the next pandemic situation successfully and efficiently.