WHO: The World Must Prepare For A New Influenza Pandemic

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WHO: The World Must Prepare For A New Influenza Pandemic
WHO: The World Must Prepare For A New Influenza Pandemic

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WHO: The world must prepare for a new influenza pandemic

“We need to be prepared and vigilant - the cost of a large flu outbreak will be much higher than the cost of preparing for it,” said WHO Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.

WHO: The world must prepare for a new influenza pandemic
WHO: The world must prepare for a new influenza pandemic

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The world must prepare for a new influenza pandemic, which is bound to be faced sooner or later. This danger cannot be underestimated. This is stated in a statement by the World Health Organization (WHO), which was released on March 11.

WHO has released the Global Influenza Strategy 2019-2030. Its goal is to control seasonal flu and disease transmission from animals to humans, and prepare for the next pandemic.

“The threat of a flu pandemic is constant. The current threat of a new virus transmitted to humans from animals and potentially causing pandemics is real. The question is not whether there will be a new pandemic, but when it will happen. We must be prepared and vigilant - the cost of a large flu outbreak will be much higher than the cost of preparing for it,”said WHO Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.

According to WHO, the new strategy is more forward-looking and universal. Its first main goal is to strengthen the ability to fight influenza in all countries, the second is to develop new ways to prevent, control and treat influenza. Annual vaccination is currently the most effective prevention method.

In the parallel article “8 things you need to know about influenza,” the agency develops the following theses.

  1. The next flu pandemic will be, it's a matter of time. Previous pandemics were in 1918, 1957, 1968 and 2009. The risk of a new animal-to-human virus emerging is real.
  2. Influenza is already a serious public health threat. WHO recalls that the annual death rate from influenza reaches 650 thousand cases.
  3. We are well prepared for the pandemic, but this is still not enough.
  4. We are all connected, so collaboration is imperative to prepare for a pandemic.
  5. We need new tools to fight the flu: vaccines and antiviral drugs.
  6. All countries must be involved.
  7. Preparing for a pandemic is cheaper than responding to it.
  8. The Global Influenza Strategy is more than just preparedness. By investing in preparing for a pandemic, countries are strengthening their health care.

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