The next pandemic ‘even deadlier’ than COVID is coming, warns WHO
The head of the World Health Organization warned that the world should put together for the next pandemic, which might be “even deadlier” than the COVID-19 pandemic.
In a gathering of the World Health Assembly in Geneva, Switzerland, on Monday, director-general Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus sounded an alarm that the COVID-19 pandemic is removed from over.
“The threat of another variant emerging that causes new surges of disease and death remains,” Tedros mentioned. “And the threat of another pathogen emerging with even deadlier potential remains.”
However, the WHO just lately declared that the COVID-19 pandemic is now not a well being emergency.
“When the next pandemic comes knocking — and it will — we must be ready to answer decisively, collectively and equitably,” he added.
“We cannot kick this can down the road,” Tedros mentioned in an tackle to the WHO’s member states. “If we do not make the changes that must be made, then who will? And if we do not make them now, then when?”
Despite issuing these dire warnings, Tedros applauded the current determination by WHO member states to draft a pandemic treaty whereas additionally approving a funds enhance, which was accepted after the group made a dedication to funds and finance reforms, according to Reuters.
Tedros additionally referred to as for up to date negotiations on the International Health Regulations, the treaty outlining preparedness and responses to well being crises, “so the world will never again have to face the devastation of a pandemic like COVID-19.”
The COVID-19 pandemic has to this point killed virtually 7 million folks worldwide, according to the WHO, with virtually 1.13 million deaths within the United States. More than 80,000 folks died of coronavirus an infection in New York alone.
The WHO has identified “priority” contagious diseases — these are prone to trigger the next pandemic due to their potential to unfold throughout a area and since there are few, if any, measures in place to counter their unfold.
These illnesses embrace Ebola, Marburg, Middle East respiratory syndrome, extreme acute respiratory syndrome, COVID-19, Zika and — maybe most terrifying — one thing referred to as “Disease X.”
Disease X is the WHO code for a illness brought on by a germ that hasn’t even been found but.
“It is not an exaggeration to say that there is potential of a Disease X event just around the corner,” Pranab Chatterjee, a researcher on the Department of International Health at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore, told the National Post.
Public well being consultants agree that the next pandemic is prone to be zoonotic, i.e., a illness that originates in animals earlier than “spilling over” to contaminate people. Most current epidemics — Ebola, HIV/AIDS and COVID-19 — have been zoonotic in origin.
International surveillance and communication of rising illness threats is “a key approach in our ability to detect a spillover event before it becomes too widespread,” Chatterjee mentioned.