Preventing the Next Pandemic
Original article from The Brink by Jessica Colarossi. November 15, 2023.
New Zealand’s former prime minister Dame Jacinda Ardern joins the world’s leading infectious disease scientists and experts at BU to discuss how to prepare for future outbreaks
“Next to climate change, I can’t think of a more important task,” Kenneth W. Freeman, BU’s president ad interim, said in his opening remarks.
Leaders from the world’s foremost health organizations and research institutions, as well as politicians and policymakers—notably, the former prime minister of New Zealand, Dame Jacinda Ardern—reflected on how governments responded to COVID-19, the need to strengthen healthcare systems to quickly identify diseases before they spread, and the most important action items for virologists, epidemiologists, researchers, doctors, and others to focus on next.
“We need to do a better job in between crises to build public trust, so we can be prepared when [a] crisis hits,” Ardern said during the keynote panel, where she was joined by two scientists who helped create New Zealand’s pandemic strategy, Sir Ashley Bloomfield and Dame Juliet Gerrard, both University of Auckland professors.
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