Recovering from COVID-19: Lessons from past disasters in Asia and the Pacific
COVID-19 in Asia-Pacific has added to the multitude of risks that the region faces intersecting with natural hazards, conflicts and fragility. More than any previous disaster, the novel coronavirus has exposed underlying risks and vulnerabilities and challenged the traditional notion of risk. The impact on population groups with pre-existing vulnerabilities has been particularly severe especially where the health crisis has turned into a humanitarian and economic crisis.
The study highlights learnings from past disasters and features 10 lessons and good practices from Asia-Pacific:
- Caught Unaware: Countries need to anticipate and plan for pandemics and disasters
- Health First: A faster and stronger health response is critical to contain pandemics
- Preventing a Socio-Economic Crisis: Rapid funding is pivotal to protect the most vulnerable
- Get the Evidence: Data and Assessments must guide recovery
- Show me the Money: Diverse financing arrangements help to sustain long term recovery
- Be the Leader: Dedicated national leadership is essential to achieve effective recovery
- Stronger Together: Engaging local governments and community for inclusive response
- Build Forward: Greener, Smarter, Better!
- Use the Data: Disaster data can help countries deal with changing riskscapes
- Innovate, Innovate, Innovate!
The study also provides a few Recommendations for covid-19 socio-economic recovery:
- Promote international cooperation in managing the cascading economic effects that countries face due to linkages with global production and the global value chain.
- Take steps to anticipate waves of the pandemic that would prolong the recession and set back recovery
- Develop a globally coordinated stimulus package for developing countries.
- Recognize that the transformation of the underlying risk factors is a global and not just a national challenge.
- Promote global and regional collaboration on health systems to effectively tackle pandemics
- Recognize the need for a dynamic and highly coordinated international recovery model
- Utilize existing regional cooperation mechanisms at the regional level to support the pandemic response.
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