Strengthening National Health Systems Critical To Ensuring Global Health Security

Global Health NOW: Global Health Security Starts with Countries
Chikwe Ihekweazu, director general of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control

“…Countries need to develop and scale up improved prevention, detection, and response to infectious disease threats. To do this, they need to build well-funded national public health institutes that incorporate surveillance and response to all infectious diseases. … [T]o build a sustainable and resilient public health institute, national governments must provide [a] majority of its funding. … While experts continue to call for action and collaboration in global health, we must remember that the pieces make the whole. The global health community is a collection of sovereign countries, professional groups, multilateral organizations, and civil society groups that ultimately have the collective responsibility for addressing the cross-border spread of infectious diseases. But the most important entity in this collection is the countries. Therefore, it is through developing and strengthening systems in countries that our goal for a safe and secure world can be achieved. … Clearly, there can be no global health security without national health security” (7/21).