JAKARTA, NETRALNEWS.COM - Bill Gates, one of the most influential people in the world thanks to his findings, admitted that the world was indeed not ready to face a global pandemic.
Gates's statement came out after being asked what the world must do to stop the Covid-19 pandemic from happening again in the future.
To answer that question, he then referred to the explanation he gave at the 2015 TED Talk event. The unpreparedness of the world for the pandemic that was conveyed five years ago seems to be true.
At that time, Gates gave input that the world needed to invest in the health system instead of investing in war. He also suggested that all countries carry out international collaborations to train medical staff to be more aware in dealing with conditions in the midst of the current viral crisis.
However, it actually failed, as when the corona virus came, the world did not have the strength to deal with it.
"We are not ready for the next epidemic," Gates said, as quoted by Business Insider.
Gates said the world needs to invest more in increasing the trials for vaccines and drug testing in the effort to contain the coronavirus.
"We need to have the ability to improve diagnostics, drugs and vaccines very quickly. The technology is there to do this well if the right investments are made. Countries can work together on this matter," he said.
Furthermore, Gates also mentioned that investment in health care and research is very important to stop the outbreak. He said the greatest risk at this time was the plague that could happen again in the future.
"If something kills more than 10 million people over the next few decades, it is most likely a virus that is highly contagious rather than war. It would not be a missile, but rather a microbe," Gates said.
Not only that, Gates also said that the world currently needs a strong health system. This should also apply in poor countries to identify outbreaks early.
Gates even suggested that medical staff also have the same capabilities as military soldiers. This is done so that medical reserves to detect outbreaks can occur more quickly.
"We must then pair medical people with the military, take advantage of the military's ability to move quickly, carry out logistics, and secure the area," he said.
The 2015 Bill Gates TED Talk presentation reflected on the Ebola outbreak that broke out in West Africa. At that time, Ebola had claimed the lives of more than 10,000 people, as Gates wrote in the Gates Notes website.
Earlier in 2010, Gates also made a similar call when the H1N1 outbreak broke out in 2009. At that time he also noted that the world was not ready for the epidemic.
Through different posts on the site, Gates suggests four steps when an epidemic occurs.
1. Collect data about the disease and how it is spread
2. Limit the movement of people and quarantine is a last resort. When the disease has spread, prevention of transmission is increasingly difficult to do.
3. Look for drugs that reduce transmission and reduce the fatality of the disease.
4. Make an effective vaccine to eradicate the disease and give it to those who are at risk.
In 2010 Gates also warned that more epidemics would occur in the decades to come.
"There is no guarantee we will be lucky later. The flu in 1918 killed more than 50 million people. Besides biological terror, there is nothing else that can kill that many people again," he said, as quoted by CNN.