International Day of Epidemic Preparedness: Battered by the Covid-19 pandemic, humans have learned about epidemic preparedness the hard way. In a bid to prepare for future outbreaks and sensitise people about epidemics on all levels, the United Nations and World Health Organization marked December 27 as the International day for Epidemic Preparedness.
International Day of Epidemic Preparedness: History
The day was first observed last December when the United Nations General Assembly had emphasised on the need to advocate the importance of the preparedness for, prevention of and partnership against epidemics.
According to the United Nations, it is necessary to learn lessons on epidemic management and apply those to strengthen epidemic prevention in order to have the most adequate response for any future adversity. It also underscores the significance of solidarity and partnership among every international organisation, and even every community and individual to combat a pestilence like Covid-19.
Marking the day, the United Nations General Assembly had invited all its member states to use awareness raising campaigns and education to exchange information, scientific knowledge along with best practices to help stepping up the preparedness for epidemics.
International Day of Epidemic Preparedness: Significance
As per a WHO statement, the need of the hour is to invest in systems that can help detect, prevent and respond to outbreaks which have the ability of disrupting health systems, supply chains and livelihood of especially the most poor countries. The UN also aims at popularising the One Health approach that fosters integration of plant health, human health and animal health along with other relevant sectors.
According to António Guterres, Secretary-General of the United Nations, Covid-19 has given us an opportunity to build back a sustainable and more equal work. He further said that the response to widespread discontent that preceded the pandemic must be based on a new global deal and a new social contract. One that has the ability to create equal opportunities for all while also respecting their rights and freedoms.