Health Medical

Huge investment needed for diagnostics, vaccines, and treatment for COVID-19 Pandemic

Image credits: Vox

The coronavirus outbreak which originated in Wuhan, China is becoming a great challenge for the whole world. WHO declared the outbreak of COVID-19 a Public Health Emergency of International Concern on 30 January 2020.

On 26 February 2020, the WHO reported that the number of new cases dropped in China, but it suddenly increased in Iran, Italy, and South Korea. This showed that it is for the first time that the number of new cases had exceeded outside China as compared to the new cases in China.

Now the virus has spread throughout the world and it is the time of global emergency. This is time to take bold actions for tackling the outbreak coronavirus (COVID-19) rather than making the cautions investments.

Leaders of G7 have promised to do everything necessary for addressing the outbreak of COVID-19. As the virus gained the status of the pandemic so it becomes obvious to see potential catastrophic effects at the global level. Economies, the fabric of society and health systems all are at great risk. To deal with this global crisis, leaders from every affected country should take tough decisions.

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To address this situation all the countries must unite and take some courageous actions rather than retreat behind the borders. Global powers such as G20 and G7 are the force that supports and brings a unified global response. They make commitments to ensure the stability of the economy and to support a coordinated research effort to develop treatments and vaccines for COVID-19. Their words must be rapidly matched by their actions.  This week the expected rate for the G7 meetings was high but the rate of results was poor.

Leaders must take some critical actions and ensure that all countries must receive the support which is required to effectively manage the coronavirus breakout. Besides this, it is clear that all countries need more investments in treatments, diagnostics, and vaccines for saving the lives of people and bringing this outbreak to end.

In recent weeks, unprecedented announcements were made for supporting the global economy. To address the fiscal impact of the virus and economic instability, the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank have decided to give $50 billion and $12 billion respectively.

The amount of funding seems to be great but it does not fill all the gaps.it will help the government of countries to strengthen their economies through national actions but the amount is not enough to cover everything that is required to deal with coronavirus pandemic and to save the lives on earth. At least 8 billion dollars are required for the funding of research, the supply of treatments for all the patients and supporting the public health measures in the countries with the poor health care systems.

No vaccine and treatment available today for this virus. Scientists across the whole world are working day and night for developing these initiatives such as the COVID-19 Therapeutic Accelerator and Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness and Innovations (CEPI). A more significant amount is needed if scientists want to develop these treatments rapidly and produce it in enough amount that will available to everyone.

Through the global fair allocation system, CEPI aims to develop the vaccines for viruses and make it in hundreds of millions of doses that will be available within 12-18 months. The amount of $3 billion is needed to make this vaccine in enough amount.

The goal of The Therapeutic Accelerator is to speed up the manufacturing, development and distribution of treatments and vaccines for coronavirus specifically in middle- and low-income countries. It will cost approximately $2.25 billion for producing 100 million courses of treatment at the end of 2020.

Both these initiatives provide more coordination to the efforts of scientists across the whole world. Also, they ensure equal distribution and access to treatments particularly when is unity among the nations is very little.

It is estimated that to compensate for the loss of the global economy due to COVID-19 at least 1 trillion dollars must be required for output loss or 13% of global GDP. Leaders of G7 and G20 need to take bold and faster actions along with more and significant resources.

The situation of this pandemic still can be changed if leaders take swift and decisive actions. For this, countries must be work or act in a united manner that will engage in significant and real coordination.

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Aimen Ramzi

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