- € 17,99
The COVID-19 pandemic isn't over, but even as governments around the world strive to put it behind us, they're also starting to talk about what happens next. How can we prevent a new pandemic from killing millions of people and devastating the global economy? Can we even hope to accomplish this?
Bill Gates believes the answer is yes, and in this book he lays out clearly and convincingly what the world should have learned from COVID-19 and what all of us can do to ward off another disaster like it. Relying on the shared knowledge of the world's foremost experts and on his own experience of combating fatal diseases through the Gates Foundation, he first makes us understand the science of corona diseases. Then he helps us understand how the nations of the world, working in conjunction with one another and with the private sector, can not only ward off another COVID-like catastrophe but also go far to eliminate all respiratory diseases, including the flu.
Here is a clarion call - strong, comprehensive, and of the gravest importance - from one of our greatest and most effective thinkers and activists.
Microsoft founder Gates (How to Avoid a Climate Disaster) delivers a thoughtful exploration of how lessons learned from Covid-19 can inform future global public health policies. In accessible prose, he spells out steps for preventing future pandemics, among them creating a global task force dedicated to doing so, a proposition he compares to fire prevention measures in the United States, noting that local governments spend $50 billion per year on that service. Gates's proposed team (cheesily named GERM, for global epidemic response and mobilization) would be managed by the WHO and include about 3,000 staffers at an annual cost of around $1 billion, and the group would be responsible for "watching out for potential outbreaks, raising the alarm when they emerge, helping to contain them... and standardizing policy recommendations." Other ideas floated include improved detection of viral outbreaks, greater funding of vaccine research, and closing the gap in access to healthcare between the first and third worlds. Gates is realistic about what he's up against ("it will be hard to get the right... level of funding"), but he does a good job of making GERM's $1 billion price tag seem reasonable, framing it as "less than one-one-thousandth of the world's annual spending on defense." The result is an intriguing proposal to blunt future pandemics.