What is Global Health Security?
Global health security depends on the existence of robust and resilient public health systems that can prevent, detect, and respond to infectious disease threats anywhere in the world. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) works 24/7 to protect the health, safety, and security of Americans and fight global health threats, so you don’t have to fight here at home. In today’s global society, the fear of disease is everywhere.
Some of today’s biggest global health and safety threats include:
- Incidence and spread of new infectious diseases
- The unprecedented globalization of travel and business can spread disease
- Growth of drug-resistant virulent pathogens
- Possible accidental release, theft or illegal use of dangerous pathogens
- CDC is strengthening capacity in four key areas to address global health and safety threats:
- A surveillance system for early detection of outbreaks before they spread
- Laboratory networks for accurate diagnosis of diseases and identification of new pathogens
- Build the capacity of frontline staff to identify, monitor, and prevent outbreaks at the source
- An emergency management system to coordinate response to crisis situations
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Factors Affecting Global Health Security
Therefore, health is strongly influenced by factors such as:
- Income Level
- Educational attainment
- Healthcare – especially vaccinations and access to maternal and child health services
- Access to safe food and drinking water
- clean area
- Free from environmental pollution
- The existence of a just and democratic political system
- In recent decades, global health, both human and non-human, has become part of the ever-evolving global health discourse. Today, many of the planet’s ecosystems have improved connectivity; Efforts to mitigate the damage caused by climate change and unsustainable consumption that can threaten the system must and must continue.
Where do We Even Begin?
There are many problems related to the health of the world population that have been discovered and solved in recent decades through new and innovative methods. The 193-member United Nations (UN) takes the lead in identifying problems, setting goals, and providing support and guidance to achieve them.
The World Health Organization (WHO) provides expertise, technical and laboratory support, data management, and analysis. The Member States implement specific strategies through their own management structures such as health and public health agencies and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and collect the necessary data to determine their effectiveness.
Eligible countries also receive financial support for this activity from the World Bank, International Monetary Fund (IMF), and private financial sources.
In 2000, the United Nations set the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) for member states to eliminate the causes and consequences of poverty and improve the lives of the poor, including their health, by 2015:
- Eradicate extreme poverty
- Achieve universal primary education
- Promote gender equality and empower women
- Reduce infant mortality
- Improves mother’s health
- Fight HIV/AIDS, Malaria, and other diseases
- Provide a stable environment
- Building global partnerships for development
By 2024, more than 100 countries that have completed health capacity assessments have mobilized strategies and resources to address gaps and have ongoing impact planning.
These countries will strengthen their capabilities and achieve “demonstrable competence” or equivalent levels of progress in at least five technical areas, as measured by relevant health and safety measures under the WHO monitoring and evaluation framework.
Levels of Poverty and Wealth
It is no coincidence that the first MDG and the first SDG are not in poverty. It is important to understand why poverty is the opposite of health and why its eradication is essential for the world and the people to achieve good health.
In the book Factfulness and Gapminder.org, Hans Rosling and his colleagues divided the world into 4 income levels based on daily income. The Dollar Street project profiles individual families around the world at four levels, helping us look at the role of income in health and its determinants.
One billion people live in level 1 extreme poverty on less than $2 a day (or less than $704 a year). Most of these people live in simple house structures, such as those made of mud or sticks. They use their bare feet as their primary means of transportation, cook over open fires, collect water in buckets, sleep on the floor, have limited access to food, and change diets.
About 85% of their income is spent on food. For this reason, few are able to save or buy other supplies. It goes without saying that healthcare is a scarce commodity. Most people in countries like Liberia, Burkina Faso, Nepal, Central Africa, Rwanda, and Madagascar are on the same level.