re posted from THE SCHILLER INSTITUTE
Coronavirus Petition: For a Global Health System: Defend Earth’s Most Precious Resource — People!
The coronavirus pandemic sweeping the world — and the economic effects of the health measures taken to crush it — reveal the inexcusable lack of development of the human species, and demand a global approach to curing, not only the coronavirus presently menacing us, but that underdevelopment that leaves us susceptible to the pandemic’s taking a terrible toll.
When health systems even in developed regions, such as Northern Italy, have been filled beyond capacity, what is the outlook for less developed nations that have an immense shortage of health infrastructure and lack secure access to clean water, sanitation, and nutritious food? How can a person who relies on daily income to support the family remain at home for weeks on end? How can people without clean water practice good hand hygiene? If no ICU beds are available, can doctors save the life of a victim of severe Covid-19 symptoms?
While the acute suffering from the coronavirus claims our attention, what of the 800,000 children under the age of 5 who die from diarrheal diseases every year? How can the health of the hundreds of millions of people currently afflicted with food insecurity be ensured?
We call for a global health infrastructure, in its fullest sense. The world requires more hospitals, new ICU beds, additional ventilators, many more trained physicians, increased manufacturing capacity for PPE, and orders of magnitude more testing equipment than existed at the beginning of this outbreak. But it also needs much more. Poverty, malnutrition, lack of access to improved water and sanitation — these are health issues too. Our shared dignity as members of the human race calls upon us to cooperate in eliminating poverty, through development. The entire world must be made safe from diseases that threaten us all.
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