The United Nations (UN) General Assembly on December 7 approved Resolution A/RES/75/27 proclaiming December 27 as the International Day of Epidemic Preparedness at its 75th session.
Ambassador Dang Dinh Quy, Permanent Representative of Vietnam to the UN
It is the first resolution adopted by the UN General Assembly in this matter and also the first resolution proposed by Vietnam.
As the COVID-19 pandemic is still ravaging the globe, causing devastating impacts on human lives and wreaking havoc on long-term social and economic development, Vietnam’s initiative has received wide support from UN member states. The resolution has been co-written by Vietnam and other countries, including Canada, Niger, Senegal, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines and Spain, with 107 others co-sponsoring.
It calls on all UN member states, organisations of the UN system and other global, regional and sub-regional organisations, private sector and civil society, including non-governmental organizations, academic institutions, individuals and other relevant stakeholders to observe the International Day of Epidemic Preparedness annually in an appropriate manner and in accordance with national contexts and priorities, through education and awareness-raising activities, in order to highlight the importance of the prevention of, preparedness for and partnership against epidemics.
Introducing the draft resolution, Ambassador Dang Dinh Quy, Permanent Representative of Vietnam to the UN, said COVID-19 is not the first epidemic that the world has faced in the past years, and it will not be the last. “In the future, another epidemic can break out at any moment and surpass previous incidences in terms of intensity and gravity if preparation is not made,” he said.
“The pandemic caught us off guard, but it also has served as a wake-up call for improving our preparedness,” the ambassador noted.
He went on to say that observing an International Day on Epidemic Preparedness will be a prominent way to achieve this goal, as the day will remind all stakeholders of the impacts left by recent past epidemics and the need to have a permanent sense of epidemic prevention in all of their activities.
“In addition, it will underline the need to raise the level of preparedness in order to have the earliest and most adequate response to any epidemic that may arise,” he continued.
“Last but not least, it will stress the importance of partnership among every individual, community, state, and also regional and international organizations in all stages of epidemic management,” Quy added.
The International Day of Epidemic Preparedness will be observed annually on December 27, the date of birth of French biologist, microbiologist, and chemist Louis Pasteur who has been renowned worldwide for his discoveries of the principles of vaccination, microbial fermentation and pasteurization.