Mar 31, 2021 - 26 min
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Is not a question of if, but when it will happen — but we can prevent it from being another COVID-19. While the coronavirus pandemic has affected parts of the world differently, a year on from its arrival one common opinion is that, on a global level, humanity wasn't ready to effectively counter arrest its devastating effects. Epidemiological crises are common through our history, and as Robert Langreth — science and health reporter at Bloomberg Businessweek — points out, when we think about how to end the current pandemic, we also need to think about the things we should do to prevent the next one hitting us just as hard. Here, he lists the four measures that could end up saving countless lives years or decades from now. "In late 2019 every infectious disease expert knew something like the novel coronavirus was coming sooner or later, just as they know today that COVID won’t be the last pandemic. As depressing as the current situation is, though, the next one — and there will be a next one — doesn’t have to be this bad. Shortly before his inauguration, President Biden proposed spending $20 billion to speed up vaccination rollouts. That’s a start. But a complete plan — one that can protect the U.S. from mass death, catastrophic economic damage, and (let’s hope) incompetent political leaders who squander the public’s trust — will have to be more comprehensive. It will likely involve at least five separate areas of research and investment. Most of all, it will require careful preparation."