As exemplified by the ongoing coronavirus disease (Covid-19) pandemic, major infectious diseases and epidemics have devastating impacts on human lives.
The UN General Assembly invites all Member States, organizations of the United Nations system and other global, regional and subregional organizations to observe the International Day of Epidemic Preparedness (December 27) annually to highlight the importance of the prevention of, preparedness for and partnership against epidemics.
As exemplified by the ongoing coronavirus disease (Covid-19) pandemic, major infectious diseases and epidemics have devastating impacts on human lives, wreaking havoc on long-term social and economic development. Global health crises threaten to overwhelm already overstretched health systems, disrupt global supply chains and cause disproportionate devastation of the livelihoods of people, including women and children, and the economies of the poorest and most vulnerable countries.
“Covid-19 is a human tragedy. But it has also created a generational opportunity. An opportunity to build back a more equal and sustainable world. The response to the pandemic, and to the widespread discontent that preceded it, must be based on a New Social Contract and a New Global Deal that create equal opportunities for all and respect the rights and freedoms of all,” said António Guterres, Secretary-General of the United Nations.
There is an urgent need to have resilient and robust health systems, reaching those who are vulnerable or in vulnerable situations. In the event of the absence of international attention, future epidemics could surpass previous outbreaks in terms of intensity and gravity.
The UN systems propose that there is great need of raising awareness, the exchange of information, scientific knowledge and best practices, quality education, and advocacy programmes on epidemics at the local, national, regional and global levels as effective measures to prevent and respond to epidemics.
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