WHO’s Global Influenza Strategy ‘Welcome Step’ But Needs To Address Emerging Challenges, Opinion Piece Says

New England Journal of Medicine: Preparing for the Next Pandemic — The WHO’s Global Influenza Strategy
Mark Eccleston-Turner of the School of Law at the University of Keele in Newcastle-under-Lyme, United Kingdom; Alexandra Phelan of the Center for Global Health Science and Security and the O’Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law at Georgetown University; and Rebecca Katz of the Center for Global Health Science and Security at Georgetown University

“…Given the ongoing threat posed by influenza, the World Health Organization (WHO) earlier this year released its Global Influenza Strategy 2019-2030. … The new strategy is a welcome step. However, we believe that it should address several current and emerging challenges to preventing and responding to influenza, among them potential barriers to pathogen sharing, use of influenza genetic-sequence data for vaccine development, and global response capabilities, including medical countermeasures. Although these challenges may be addressed in other ongoing initiatives, influenza preparedness and response strategies must be sufficiently agile for new technologies, transparent for accountability, and equitable for global health justice. … In creating its Global Influenza Strategy 2019-2030, the WHO has shown the ambition and foresight required to ensure that the world can be better prepared for the next influenza pandemic and the ongoing burden of seasonal influenza. But additional challenges will test the effectiveness of the strategy unless efforts are made to ensure that they are also addressed” (12/5)

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