The 2003 funeral of a doctor who died of SARS infection in Hong Kong during the pandemic. Only six countries have taken steps to evaluate their abilities to withstand a global pandemic, according to a report sponsored by the World Bank. (as shown in original article)

The New York Times—Only Six Nations Have Evaluated Readiness for Global Pandemic

Of the world’s countries, only six — three rich ones and three poor ones — have taken the steps they should have to evaluate their ability to withstand a global pandemic, according to a recent report sponsored by the World Bank.

Just three wealthy countries — Finland, Saudi Arabia and the United States — have gone through two external evaluations of their readiness to face pandemics, one for human diseases and one for animal outbreaks, the study found.

As of last April, only three poor countries — Eritrea, Pakistan and Tanzania— had undergone both evaluations and had described how they planned to find the money to rectify their weaknesses.

The unusually concise and crisp report, “From Panic and Neglect to Investing in Health Security,” was written by experts from the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund, the African and Asian development banks, and finance officials from various governments.

Under Dr. Jim Yong Kim, its current president, the World Bank has strongly advocated creating emergency funds to fight disease outbreaks. In 1987, Dr. Kim helped found Partners in Health, which provides medical care in Haiti and other poor countries and which fought Ebola in West Africa in 2014.

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