WHO to audit International Heath Response in preparation for future pandemics

The World Health Organization (WHO) has kicked off the evaluation international health response (IHR) during the coronavirus pandemic so far and recommend any changes it believes are necessary.

In a statement made by the Director-General of WHO Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus during a media briefing on COVID-19, the review committee will review the convening of the Emergency Committee, the declaration of a public health emergency of international concern, the role and the functioning of national IHR focal points, and will examine the progress made in implementing the recommendations.

Depending on progress made, the committee may present an interim progress report to the resumed World Health Assembly in November, and a final report to the Assembly in May next year.

The committee is also expected to communicate as needed with other review bodies including the Independent Panel for Pandemic Preparedness and Response (IPPR) and the Independent Oversight Advisory Committee (IOAC) for the WHO Health Emergencies Programme. The names of the members of the review committee have been published on the WHO website.

Tredos disclosed that this will not be the last pandemic as history teaches us that outbreaks and pandemics are a fact of life. He, however, urged that when the next pandemic comes, the world must be ready, more ready than it was this time.