British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has called for ‘Global Pandemic Radar’ to identify and track new Covid variants and emerging diseases.
The pathogen surveillance network will save lives and protect health systems by spotting diseases before they cause future pandemics and enabling the rapid development of vaccines, treatments and tests, Downing Street said in a statement.
Prime Minister Johnson spoke to World Health Organisation Director-General Dr Tedros Ghebreyesus and Director of the Wellcome Trust, Jeremy Farrar, who welcomed the move.
WHO will lead an implementation group, supported by the Wellcome Trust, to launch this new international partnership to identify, track and share data on new coronavirus variants and monitor vaccine resistance in populations.
The ‘Global Pandemic Radar’ is expected to be fully up and running with a network of surveillance hubs before the end of 2021, significantly improving global health security going into next year.
“Tackling Covid-19 globally and ensuring we are better prepared for future health threats is an absolute priority for the UK’s G7 presidency. The world must never be caught unawares again by a virus spreading among us unchecked. We need to build a system of disease surveillance fit for the 21st century, with real-time data sharing and rapid genomic sequencing and response,” the PM said.
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