The COVID-19 pandemic has triggered unprecedented challenges. Several solutions have been provided. A decent leadership that entails elements of empathy and humanity is proposed as a different type of ‘vaccine’.
The COVID-19 pandemic is both global and local at the same time. To fight the pandemic, it takes global efforts, collaboration across all national borders, and it will only be successful if local and individual actors complete the efforts.
While developed nations are on track in immunising their citizens against COVID-19, Africa lags far behind. The continent needs more supplies but governments and scientific institutions must try harder to dispel widespread public mistrust causing high levels of vaccine hesitancy.
COVID-19 vaccination programmes give reason to hope that emergency public health measures can soon be repealed. However, a historical perspective on emergency measures in response to terrorism suggests caution is required in order to avoid the ‘normalisation’ of these measures.
Apart from being a public health emergency, the COVID-19 pandemic is also a global crisis of public law and human rights. Emergency measures introduced in many countries pose concerns from the perspective of constitutional and international law.
Having underestimated the SARS-CoV-2 virus and politicised its control, Brazil faces an extreme public health crisis. At the heart of the handling of the pandemic by its government lies an anti-human rights rhetoric derived from far-right populist politics.
Two-way engagement and cooperation with local communities with a human rights based approach are essential tools in the response to outbreaks and transmission prevention in transnational health emergencies. The response to the 2013-2015 EVD outbreak in West Africa highlighted the importance of preparedness for communication and strong engagement with local communities when designing and implementing containment measures.
Under the state of emergency, governments have curtailed numerous fundamental rights. Since epistemic uncertainty makes it difficult to determine whether this is constitutionally warranted, we are witnessing a dispute over the nature and future of constitutional democracy.
This post reflects on supranational and domestic human rights exception regimes and the decisions made by states to restrict or derogate from their human rights obligations. Using France as an example, the post looks into how things can go wrong.
COVID-19 has shown that strengthening innovation and production capacities in the pharmaceutical and medical supply and device industries is essential to pandemic preparedness. In Latin America, universities are playing a key role when facing this ongoing challenge in a context of regional economic hardship.