“The declaration of the global epidemic was not late”

The Director of Environment, Climate Change and Health of the World Health Organization (WHO), Maria Neira, has assured this Wednesday that “the declaration of the global epidemic and the state of maximum alert in public health of the WHO was not late”.

He explained it during the telematic conference ‘Covid-19: the crossroads of the WHO’ in Barcelona Tribune in which the president of the Societat Econòmica Barcelona d’Amics del País, Miquel Roca, the head of preventive medicine and epidemiology have also participated from the Hospital Clínic de Barcelona, ​​Antoni Trilla, and the journalist Josep Corbella.


The statement, which was made on January 30, was made through the WHO’s “most powerful” alert system.




Neira has insisted that the statement, which was made on January 30, was made through the most powerful alert system of the WHO: “We do not have a higher mechanism than that.” He added that if it had been declared earlier “it would have diminished credibility” to the WHO, since then the cases outside of China were less than 100. Regarding the vaccine for Covid-19, Neira has predicted that it will be ready in early 2021 , although he has recognized that “the most optimistic think it will be sooner.”

The Director of Environment, Climate Change and Health of the World Health Organization, María Neira (EP)

This edition of the Barcelona Tribuna, organized by La Vanguardia, the Spanish Association of Directors (AED) and the Societat Econmica Barcelonesa d’Amics del País, was moderated by the journalist Ramon Rovira.


Regarding the vaccine for Covid-19, Neira has predicted that it will be ready in early 2021

Neira has described herself as “a total passionate about the WHO”, which she considers essential to help guide global public health, but has recalled that the organization has limitations. In this sense, Trilla has argued that the WHO “has fallen a bit short because it does not have enough strength” to put its recommendations into practice.



“We have endowed it with many limitations, it has dysfunctions and there is an excessive bureaucracy,” he added. Neira has confirmed this idea: “We have the WHO that we deserve if we want a decoration one. I believe in the need to have an organism with real capacity to influence ”.


Geopolitics

Regarding the difficulties in management, Neira highlighted the geopolitical game that has been seen during the pandemic, “a politicized situation with the struggle for leadership” and the competition between countries for medical supplies.

Corbella has asked about “the culture of the political ‘riffraff’ that has emerged in recent weeks in Spain” in the context of the pandemic, something that Neira has accused of not helping because, in her opinion, it diverts attention from what is important .

Regarding the possible departure of the United States from the WHO, he assured that they have not received any notification for what for them continues to be a member state: “We work every day with all American institutions.”


Environment

Neira has stressed the importance of “stopping the destruction of the environment and living in greater harmony with ecosystems” to avoid future pandemics.

“A large percentage of current pandemics are due to mistreatment of the environment, if we do not protect it, humans will be the main victims,” ​​he concluded.



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