Since the rise of globalization, the world has become more closely connected and people can easily interact with each other without facing any serious barriers. This has been beneficial to the social, political, and economic sphere as far as the welfare of people is concerned. The free movement of people, goods, and services brought about by globalization has stimulated socio-economic development, but it has also become a channel for the spread of diseases. Since globalization has contributed to the quick spread of the Covid-19 around the world, people could be tempted to retreat into narrow national strategies for fighting it. However, it would be an enormous error. What Covid-19 has taught is the need for a globalization of scientific, medical, and public health efforts with shared purposes and goals, as well as wider cooperation to counter this and future pandemics. The world needs to create a shared global heath system to identify and spread innovative approaches for combating pandemics.
Today the total number of Covid-19 patients in the world are almost 13 million with more than 567,000 people dying due to the effects of the SARS-CoV-2. The spread of Covid-19 is far from over, indeed it is continuing to spread worldwide. Due to the severe limitations of health systems and the ability to perform tests, official numbers do not represent the real situation and registered data understate real data.
In order to win Covid-19 it will certainly be necessary to develop a safe and effective vaccine, but it will be equally important to develop a sense of global solidarity. The pandemic knows no boundaries. In Africa, the Middle East, Central and South America, the Covid-19 pandemic is increasing especially in the most fragile contexts. In many areas of the world, the humanitarian framework is already devastating, and this pandemic exacerbates the living conditions of families who have always struggled to meet basic needs, from housing to food, water and health care.
It is clear that an uncontrollable spread of the disease in these contexts would continue to increase the already high number of deaths globally, and would perpetuate the risk that the pandemic can re-emerge again in areas where the peak has been previously suppressed.
In this context only a multilateral and global organization like the World Health Organization (WHO) can step in to solve some of these issues. WHO manages to support national health plans and emergency responses in more than 150 countries. It is also the only organization in the world with the infrastructure and ability to identify emerging diseases, as it did with Covid-19 and every major health threat in modern history. It can bring nations together for a global approach and ensure that help is provided to countries that need it most. It can also find a diplomatic way to encourage countries to share health data and ensure that the data is interpreted within contexts. To reach this solution and to enable the WHO to perform this role, the WHO needs to be strongly supported by countries to increase its capacity and mandates.
The Global Alliance for Infections in Surgery is an independent alliance, promoted in 2016 by the World Society of Emergency Surgery (WSES). Its aim is to define global standards of care in the prevention and management of infections across the surgical pathway. Its International Advisory Board includes professionals from 88 countries worldwide, representing all continents.
In the Covid-19 era, the Global Alliance for Infections in Surgery calls for global solidarity.
During these months, trying to cope with the immediate devastating effects of the pandemic, nations have turned toward imposing unprecedented executive measures, including closing borders. However, a pandemic knows no borders. All countries are affected. We must remain united in our shared humanity. The fight against this global pandemic, which is taking so many lives and challenging our societies, requires more and enhanced international cooperation and worldwide solidarity. Containing and countering this pandemic calls for a co-operative, transparent, science-based and coordinated global response. We are concerned by the serious threat to all countries, particularly countries in situations of conflict and post-conflict countries, where health systems are less prepared, as well as the particular risk faced by refugees and displaced persons.
There are no doubts that Covid-19 is one of the most dire threats the world has ever faced. And yet, amidst the confusion and anxiety, there should be strong signs of hope and global solidarity. In this time of crisis, we are all citizens of the world, and success will only be achieved when all people, in all countries around the world, are protected and free from Covid-19.
Global solidarity is the response we need now! The challenge to overcome this pandemic is immense, but the capacity of humanity to solve this problem is greater.