African Leadership is Critical in Responding to Public Health Threats

RANA African Leadership is Critical in Responding to Public Health Threats

During the COVID-19 pandemic, African countries secured and established procurement mechanisms that allowed the continent to access millions of lifesaving vaccines. This successful step was made possible by collaboration between African institutions and African Union (AU) heads of state and government, demonstrating the importance and power of partnerships. 

Building on the pandemic’s lessons and Africa CDC’s New Public Health Order, Resilience Action Network Africa and Pandemic Action Network joined partners to call for an African coalition of support within the World Health Organization’s Intergovernmental Negotiating Body for a pandemic accord process. African leaders must unite behind a framework of three principles to ensure that optimized health for all people and the planet is addressed as the world comes together to improve pandemic preparedness, prevention, and response:  

  1. Position human rights and shared public interest at the heart of global health security decisions.
  2. Include African leaders as equal stakeholders and participants in global health security governance processes.
  3. Establish sustainable and equitable finance models to create a resilient African health system for African vaccines, diagnostics, and therapeutics manufacturing. 

AU voices must be strengthened to ensure Africa’s lessons, expertise, and leadership are utilized to address broader global health challenges.

Read the Nature opinion authored in partnership with leaders from Africa CDC, University of Maryland School of Medicine, Pandemic Action Network, Resilience Action Network Africa, African Export-Import Bank, African Development Bank, U.S. International Development Finance Corporation, Duke Global Health Innovation Center, and The Henry M. Jackson Foundation for the Advancement of Military Medicine.