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National Health Authorities Should Prioritize Public Health Emergency Preparedness

The Hill: In times of disaster, patients expect government to step up to meet their needs
Nicolette Louissaint, executive director of Healthcare Ready

“…[W]e must continue to invest in plans and capabilities that will enable countries to mobilize an effective response in the face of disease threats. … A recent YouGov poll conducted for Healthcare Ready asked 15,201 adults in 13 countries across the world … how long they could go without necessary medicines and medical supplies if a disaster disrupted their ability to access health care services. … The poll … revealed that patients rely heavily on national and local governments to respond to disease outbreaks and natural disasters. … At the same time, the poll affirmed the majority of patients would rely on their health care providers for treatment. … Ensuring the world is ready to meet the next health emergency should be top of mind for national health authorities. Before the next disaster strikes, it is important that we focus on bolstering our ability to respond to public health emergencies. … I urge the global community to focus even more on addressing patient vulnerabilities before the next global disease outbreak, because if the data tells us anything, it’s only a matter of time” (7/9).