The world’s largest humanitarian network says strong preparedness systems are “seriously lacking” despite three years of the COVID-19 pandemic.
All countries remain “dangerously unprepared” for the next pandemic, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) has warned, saying future health crises could also be met with disasters of more more likely climate-related.
Despite three “brutal” years of the COVID-19 pandemic, strong preparedness systems are “seriously lacking”, the IFRC said in its World Disasters Report 2022, released on Monday. He called on countries to update their preparedness plans by the end of the year.
The world’s largest humanitarian network said building networks of trust, equity and local action was key to preparing for the next crisis.
The recommendations were released on the third anniversary of the World Health Organization’s declaration of COVID-19 as an international public health emergency.
“The next pandemic could be imminent,” said Jagan Chapagain, secretary general of the IFRC, the world’s largest disaster response network. “If the experience of COVID-19 doesn’t hasten our steps toward preparedness, what will?”
The report says countries need to be prepared for “multiple risks, not just one”, adding that societies have only become truly resilient by planning for different types of disasters, as they can occur simultaneously.
The IFRC cited the increase in climate-related disasters and waves of disease outbreaks this century, of which COVID-19 was just one example.
He said extreme weather events are becoming more frequent and intense “and our ability to simply respond to them is limited”.
The report says major risks hurt those who are already most vulnerable. He called leaving the poorest exposed “self-destructive.”
The report also says countries should review their legislation to ensure it is in line with their pandemic preparedness plans by the end of 2023 and adopt a new treaty and revised international health regulations by the end of 2023. next year that would invest more in preparing local communities.
He also recommended that countries increase domestic health financing by 1% of their gross domestic product and global health financing by at least $15 billion a year, which Chapagain described as a “good investment.” to do”.
“The important thing is that there has to be political will to engage in it,” he said. “If it’s there, it’s possible.”