We haven’t left Covid behind, even though the end of the health emergency has been declared. “There remains the threat of another emerging variant capable of causing new waves of disease and death”, but also the “threat of another emerging pathogen with even more deadly potential” says the director-general of the World Health Organization (who), Tedros Ghebreyesus. For this reason, one of the calls launched by the World Organization is to collaborate: “I urge all Member States to engage constructively and urgently in the negotiations on the Pandemic Agreement and on the International Health Regulations, so that the world never again has to face the devastation of a pandemic like Covid”. “The end of Covid 19 as a global health emergency is not the end of Covid 19 as a global health threat… When the next pandemic knocks, and it will, we must be ready to respond decisively, collectively and fairly,” he added. .
How scary the prospect of a new pandemic can be comes from the WHO’s own elaborations. During the period 2020-2021, the Covid-19 has provoked 336.8 million years of life lost globally, resulting in the premature deaths of millions of people who have contracted the virus. “This is equivalent to an average of 22 years of life lost for each excess death,” WHO explains in a statement. “The COVID-19 pandemic is an important reminder that progress is neither linear nor guaranteed – warns Samira Asma, WHO Deputy Director-General for Data and Analysis – To stay on track towards the SDG agenda 2030 (Sustainable Development Goals), we must act decisively and collectively in order to have a measurable impact in all countries“. The World Health Statistics report with data up to 2022 notes that significant improvements in maternal and child health have been observed since 2000, and the incidence of infectious diseases such as HIV, tuberculosis and malaria has also decreased. along with a reduced risk of premature death from noncommunicable diseases and injuries. Together, these have contributed to an increase in global life expectancy from 67 years in 2000 to 73 years in 2019, the report said. But the Covid pandemic has contributed to weakening many health-related indicators. The study highlights, among other things, a stagnation in health progress of key health indicators compared to the trends observed in the period 2000-2015 as well as the growing threat of non-communicable diseases and climate change.