Global Governance Institute


Covid-19 shows why health and well-being should be an everyday target

2 April 2020

Julius Mugwagwa, GGI Global Health Thematic Director, on whether African leaders will progress from political will to political action in strengthening local health systems


One challenge, multiple local realities

The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed the inadequacies in health systems of many countries globally. In high-income countries, Italy’s health care system is overwhelmed, the UK seems to be struggling to catch up with the rising number of cases, and there are doubts as to whether the United States’ market-based system will be able to respond effectively.

In low-income countries, the same exposure of health system weaknesses is also unravelling, but there is another dimension: how the responses and recovery trajectories beyond the pandemic intertwine with development realities. Across sub-Saharan Africa, the reality and feasibility of countries being able to deploy strategies that have proved effective elsewhere – which include testing, tracing, adopting and enforcing social distancing, timeous decision-making to stop economies from free-falling, and engagement of the private sector – all intertwine with unwieldy historical and contemporary development realities of endemic exclusion and inequality. Read the whole article here.