Evidence-Based Preparedness for Post COVID-19
Evidence-Based Approaches to Effectively Respond to Public Health Emergencies [Working Title]
In spite of skepticisms at various levels, the COVID-19 pandemic posed unprecedented impact on global health and economy. Although projections have yet to materialize, African countries are not at their worst with COVID-19. Yet, the worst is probably in the making despite swift, progressive, and adaptable responses many African countries have taken based on lessons from countries affected by the pandemic earlier. While efforts are underway to contain the current pandemic, the almost certain hit
... by another pandemic may call for appropriate preparation. This review aims to shade light on the need to align current COVID-19 prevention and management with preparation for the potential next one. A rapid review of available evidence was undertaken using clearly defined inclusion criteria and data analysis methods. The immediate focus of preparedness is coordination of interventions where evidence generation, policy making, public and private sector as well as community engagement is required to contain the current COVID-19 pandemic. Improved/adapted mathematical projections to guide decisions; improved/adapted methods for risk communication and community engagement; improved methods/technologies for surveillance, case detection and containment; optimal use of all the limited available resources; and strengthening partnerships at all levels need to be strengthened. Current endeavors should pay attention to strengthen the surveillance system for early detection; provision of adequate health care infrastructure; strong and capable health workforce and financing. Furthermore, strengthen research capacity to play its role to shape the post-COVID-19 is critical by strengthening inter and intra-disciplinary research capacities; forging partnerships at all levels. Evidently COVID-19 has posed unprecedented challenge to the globe at large. Yet, it also offered opportunities to reassess existing health system vis-à-vis the pandemics. Besides, useful lessons from COVID-19 are that it does not discriminate human beings across globe by economy, political system and socio-cultural backgrounds. This is a useful lesson for global solidarity and align efforts to contain post COVID-19 implications as well as to prevent and manage similar such pandemics in the future.