2020 Goalkeepers Report - Covid-19 - A Global Perspective

Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
Publication Date:
15 September 2020
Africa, Coronavirus, Governance, International Organizations and Africa

The prefix "pan" in the word "pandemic" means the disease exists all over the world. It might as well also mean that it affects every aspect of society. An article about the 1918 influenza pandemic in India referred to that experience as "a set of mutually exacerbating catastrophes." In the blink of an eye, a health crisis became an economic crisis, a food crisis, a housing crisis, a political crisis. Everything collided with everything else. "Mutually exacerbating catastrophes" is an apt description for the COVID-19 pandemic, too. First, there was the disease itself. Then, governments moved resources to try to manage it and people stopped seeking health care to avoid being infected: building blocks of a comprehensive health catastrophe. Consider vaccine coverage, which is a good proxy measure for how health systems are functioning.

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