UAE has plans in place to deal with health crises – News
The experience of containing the pandemic has given the country’s response teams the confidence to deal with emerging threats
No country expected a pandemic to strike in 2020. Nor did the World Health Organization, virologists and epidemiologists see the contagion coming. More than two years later, the origins of the coronavirus still remain a mystery, although it was first detected at a veterinary market in Wuhan, China. In 2020, the global response to the virus was slow and hesitant.
The WHO delayed calling it a pandemic for nearly two months, by which time it had become a full-fledged health emergency that disrupted lives and livelihoods. Today, as the world recovers and returns to normal, it is worrying that the origins of the virus remain unclear.
Scientists have yet to prove that the virus is zoonotic in nature, meaning it jumped from animals to humans. Fingers were pointed at the humble bat. Some say there was an intermediary, like the pangolin or even a snake. Evidence, however, is scarce as opinions abound.
The mystery persists, giving free rein to conspiracy theories, misinformation and fake news. But the silver lining of this crisis is that governments, health organizations and pharmaceutical companies are better prepared to deal with future pandemics and other challenges that come their way. Much research has been done on the nature of the virus and a variety of vaccines have been developed.
Closer to home, a United Nations report says the UAE is one of the best prepared countries to tackle multiple crises. These include disasters caused by climate change. There is a simmering conflict that has affected the production and supply of food and other essentials. In fact, the world may be heading for a perfect storm, or a storm of crises is rushing our way.
Here, it is heartening that the UAE is one of the best prepared countries to face risks and challenges in the future, according to a report published by the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Knowledge Foundation (MBRF) and the United Nations Development Programme. The experience of containing the pandemic has given the country’s response teams the confidence to deal with emerging threats with a cool, strategic head.
The country’s health and emergency response systems are constantly on high alert. Nothing is left to chance and the National Crisis and Disaster Management Authority is to be commended for quickly bringing Covid cases under control. Mechanisms for tracing, monitoring, treatment and vaccination were quickly put in place.
Today, the United Arab Emirates is the most vaccinated country in the world with an arsenal of vaccines reaching the arms of the population. Health infrastructure has been strengthened and a recent report indicates that the country’s vaccination campaign has averted more than 15,000 deaths.
Meanwhile, the country is developing its tech sector to keep the cogs of the industry running even in the worst of times. It invests heavily in research and development in all sectors while maintaining a focus on sustainability while diversifying its economy beyond oil. It is also about forging bilateral trade partnerships to ensure the supply of essential products. Leaders believe that economic security is vital for robust recovery and growth. The UAE is in good hands, thanks to the foresight of the leadership.