Today the planet celebrates Epidemic Preparedness Day

 (Prensa Latina) Shaken by the terrifying sequel left by Covid-19 -more than 80 million 700 thousand cases and one million 700 thousand deaths-, humanity today celebrates the International Day of Preparation against Epidemics
It will be the first time that the planet dedicates a day to the subject and, although it is better late than never, one does not stop wondering how it is possible that it is only now that such an initiative is launched.
For lack of painful experiences it was not. Suffice it to recall the Spanish flu (1918-1919), which killed an estimated 20 to 40 million people in just one year and is so far the most devastating in human history.
Perhaps what was lacking then were international organizations such as the United Nations (UN, founded in October 1945) or the World Health Organization (WHO, April 1948), but the more than 70 years that have elapsed since then were more than enough time …
The omission was corrected by Vietnam, one of the nations that most successfully faces Covid-19.
Earlier this month, the Vietnamese representation to the UN proposed to the General Assembly to celebrate the International Day of Preparedness against Epidemics on December 27 of each year and the initiative received warm support.
A few days later, with the support of all member states, Resolution A / RES / 75/27 was approved, the first one adopted by the main deliberative body of the United Nations on the topic of epidemics.
The proposal was founded on the devastating consequences of infectious diseases, epidemics and pandemics, including the loss of human lives and their dire impact on the economic and social development of nations, especially those with the most vulnerable economies.
The resolution calls on the international community, UN agencies, regional and international organizations, the private sector, individuals and institutions, to make the date an instrument for the prevention and control of epidemics, including raising awareness at the individual, community, National and international.
It was certainly a now or never agreement, because the scenario set by Covid-19 did not allow for delays.
Still, getting to that point was not easy. According to the Vietnamese ambassador to the UN, Dang Dinh Quy, the contents of the resolution were the subject of extensive discussions because several countries differed on the origin of the epidemics and the role of multilateral mechanisms, especially the WHO.
But in the end sanity prevailed and finally we have a world day of preparation against epidemics, the diplomat celebrated.
Vietnam, moreover, did not randomly propose the date of December 27: on a day like that in 1822 the Frenchman Louis Pasteur was born, a pioneer of modern microbiology and one of the scientists who established the foundations of preventive medicine.
Nor was it by chance that the proponent of the initiative was Vietnam, since this year he held a non-permanent position on the Security Council and from that responsibility he has made several proposals aimed at safeguarding peace, stability and the progress of humanity.
In 2020, he also held the pro tempore presidency of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations and, among other valuable actions, he has been a sort of coordinator of regional actions against Covid-19.
Vietnam has also provided significant material assistance to other countries with fewer resources to face the pandemic and makes its experiences in containing the disease available to the international community.
These experiences are validated by the facts: to date, the Indochinese nation only reports 1,341 cases and 35 deaths, resulting in infection rates and deaths per million people among the best on the planet in countries with more than 80 million population.
The WHO, governments, scientific institutions and experts from around the world praise their performance against Covid-19. As much as they are grateful that starting this year the world will have a special day to fight epidemics.

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