9 Steps to End COVID-19 and Prevent the Next Pandemic: Essential Outcomes From the World Health Assembly

The Journal of the American Medical Association Health Forum, published online June 10, 2021, at 1-4. (2021). Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works. 2389. DOI No.: 10.1001/jamahealthforum.2021.1852

5 Pages Posted: 7 Jul 2021

See all articles by Lawrence O. Gostin

Lawrence O. Gostin

Georgetown University - Law Center - O'Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law

Date Written: June 10, 2021

Abstract

A year ago, the World Health Assembly (WHA) met virtually for the first time since the creation of the World Health Organization (WHO) in 1948. Last year’s WHA adopted a resolution asking states to intensify action to fight COVID-19. Yet a year on, there have been 3.7 million deaths reported, with the real number estimated as more than 7 million. From May 24-31, 2021, the 74th WHA (WHA74) was again held virtually amidst this historic pandemic. The WHA created a member states working group on strengthening WHO preparedness for and response to health emergencies to make recommendations to next year’s WHA. Here are 9 steps to end this pandemic and prevent the next one:

1. Prevent zoonotic spillovers
2. Rapid detection and response
3. Biosecurity and biosafety Oversight
4. Empower the WHO
5. Elevate Pandemic Response to High Political Levels
6. Embed Equity in Preparation and Response
7. Suspend Intellectual Property Rights
8. Create an International Pandemic Financing Facility
9. Support Health Workers

Note: Funding Statement: There was no funding for this article.

Declaration of Interests: Mr Gostin is director of the WHO Center on National and Global Health Law and a member of the independent Panel for a Global Public Health Convention. He is providing technical assistance to the WHO on its Health Worker Compact. No other disclosures were reported.

Keywords: Health Law and Policy, Coronavirus (COVID-19), Global Health, Global Health Law, World Health Assembly

Suggested Citation

Gostin, Lawrence O., 9 Steps to End COVID-19 and Prevent the Next Pandemic: Essential Outcomes From the World Health Assembly (June 10, 2021). The Journal of the American Medical Association Health Forum, published online June 10, 2021, at 1-4. (2021). Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works. 2389. DOI No.: 10.1001/jamahealthforum.2021.1852, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3866815

Lawrence O. Gostin (Contact Author)

Georgetown University - Law Center - O'Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law ( email )

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