Lancet COVID-19 Commission Statement on the occasion of the 75th session of the UN General Assembly

Read  Lancet COVID-19 Commission Statement on the occasion of the 75th session of the UN General Assembly, by Jeffrey Sachs, the Lancet COVID-19 Commissioners, Task Force Chairs, and Commission Secretariat.

Prof. Phoebe Koundouri is one of the Commissioners and Green Recovery Task Force co-chair.

Published: September 14, 2020DOI: DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(20)31927-9

The Statement highlights ten priority actions for the coming months: 

1. Track down the origins of the virus in an open, scientific, and unbiased way not influenced by geopolitical agendas.

2. Suppress the epidemic through the proven package of non-pharmaceutical approaches (NPIs), as accomplished by several countries, with several in the Asia-Pacific region. 

3. Base policy-making on objective scientific evidence, and stop politicians and others in positions of power from subverting clinical trials and other scientific protocols. 

4. Collect and publish timely and internationally consistent data on the state of the pandemic, including humanitarian and economic consequences. 

5. Ensure universal access to the tools to fight COVID-19, including test kits, therapeutics, and prospective vaccines.

6. Secure access of developing countries to financing from international sources, especially from the IMF and World Bank. 

7. Direct urgent protection towards vulnerable groups, including the elderly, persons in poverty and hunger, vulnerable women, children, persons with chronic diseases and disabilities, the homeless, migrants, refugees, Indigenous Peoples, and ethnic and racial minorities.

8. Prepare for a deep restructuring of global finances, including debt relief, new forms of international financing, and reform of monetary arrangements. 

9. Economic recovery will be based on public-investment-led growth in green, digital, and inclusive technologies, based on the SDGs. 

10. Support UN institutions and the UN Charter, resisting any attempts at a new Cold War. 

The full Statement can be found on The Lancet website (open access)

Executive summary

The Lancet COVID-19 Commission was launched on
July 9, 2020, to assist governments, civil society, and
UN institutions in responding effectively to the
COVID-19 pandemic. The Commission aims to offer
practical solutions to the four main global challenges
posed by the pandemic: suppressing the pandemic by
means of pharmaceutical and non-pharmaceutical
interventions; overcoming humanitarian emergencies,
including poverty, hunger, and mental distress, caused
by the pandemic; restructuring public and private
finances in the wake of the pandemic; and rebuilding the
world economy in an inclusive, resilient, and sustainable
way that is aligned with the Sustainable Development
Goals (SDGs) and the Paris Climate Agreement. Many
creative solutions are already being implemented, and a
key aim of the Commission is to accelerate their adoption
worldwide. 

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