Another Pandemic ‘Absolutely Inevitable’: Top UK Scientist’s Warning

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As the world begins to recover from the Covid-19 pandemic that ravaged the globe from 2019 to 2021, a prominent British scientist has issued a stark warning: another pandemic is “absolutely inevitable.” Sir Patrick Vallance, the former chief scientific adviser to the British government, has urged the UK government to prioritize pandemic preparedness, emphasizing that the country is currently “not ready” for such an event, according to The Guardian.

Speaking at a panel event at the Hay Festival in Powys, Vallance highlighted the urgent need for the UK to implement “better surveillance” systems to detect emerging virus threats. He stressed that without proper preparation, the country could face severe consequences when another pandemic strikes. Vallance recommended several measures, including the development of diagnostic tests, vaccines, and treatments, which could help prevent the drastic steps that were necessary during the Covid-19 pandemic. However, he noted that achieving this would require significant coordination and commitment from the government.

“We know we have to have an army, not because there’s going to be a war this year, but we know it’s an important part of what we need as a nation. We need to treat this preparedness in the same way and not to view it as an easy thing to keep cutting back when there’s no sign of a pandemic – because there won’t be a sign of a pandemic,” Vallance stated, as reported by The Guardian. He expressed concern that by 2023, the G7 countries had “sort of forgotten” the importance of pandemic preparations that were emphasized in 2021. “You can’t forget about it,” he added, underscoring the continuous need for vigilance and readiness.

During the panel event, Vallance also mentioned the World Health Organization’s (WHO) pandemic accord, which he described as a “positive step.” However, he criticized the accord for its “lack of focus and urgency,” suggesting that more decisive actions are necessary to ensure global preparedness for future pandemics.

The impact of the Covid-19 pandemic has been profound. Last week, the WHO reported that Covid-19 has reduced global life expectancy by nearly two years, effectively erasing a decade of progress. According to the UN health agency’s world health statistics study, global life expectancy fell by 1.8 years to 71.4 years, a level last seen in 2012. Additionally, the average time a person can expect to live in good health decreased by 1.5 years to 61.9 years in 2021.

Reflecting on the devastating effects of Covid-19, Vallance’s warning serves as a crucial reminder of the importance of sustained investment in public health infrastructure and pandemic preparedness. The Covid-19 pandemic showed how unprepared many countries were, leading to widespread loss of life and severe economic disruptions. As small waves of the virus continue to appear globally, the need for robust surveillance and response mechanisms is more evident than ever.

The lessons learned from the Covid-19 pandemic should drive global and national efforts to bolster healthcare systems, improve disease surveillance, and ensure that effective vaccines and treatments are readily available. By taking these steps, nations can better protect their populations from the inevitable future pandemics that lie ahead.

In the face of this daunting warning, the focus must shift from reactive measures to proactive planning and investment. Governments, international organizations, and the scientific community must collaborate to build resilient systems capable of withstanding the next global health crisis. Sir Patrick Vallance’s message is clear: the time to prepare is now, before the next pandemic strikes.

Written by Influencer Editorial Team

Managed By Influencer Team - United Kingdom

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