UK inflation data and New Zealand rate hike remind investors that global economy still faces many challenges
Though highly skilled, SA farmers need access to support services to meet consumer demand for close-at-hand ethically farmed, organic produce
The Reserve Bank has to report as soon as possible on its investigation into any foreign exchange declarations made by the president arising from the stolen money
The governing party is discussing whether those criminally convicted of a serious crime should still have a home in the ANC
The social media and gaming giant is grappling with a downturn in China’s economy, amid a property slump and Covid-19 lockdowns
With price relief awaiting motorists in September, Outa is worried the fuel levy will be increased to offset the scrapping of e-tolls
The aim is to have 65% of the business’s electricity requirements at a manufacturing level across SA sourced from sustainable energy by 2030
Rail workers will stage nationwide strikes and bus and Underground staff will hold stoppages in London, among other disruptions
England Test captain says he hopes his team has retained their “venom” before the three-match series against SA
The fitment centre group has partnered with Disky for motorists to renew their vehicle licenses using WhatsApp
A quick glance at the headlines does not suggest that now is the time for optimism around global health. The Covid-19 pandemic continues to affect hundreds of millions of people around the world, routine healthcare services and immunisation campaigns are struggling to catch up with the pandemic backlog, and there are even fears that the millions of people displaced by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine could drive increases in rates of diseases such as multi-drug resistant tuberculosis in Europe.
These new challenges will not abate on their own, nor are they the only issues facing global health: Covid-19 variants, novel pathogens driven by climate change, rising rates of previously controlled infections and increasing global mobility could all give rise to a new pandemic.
Against this backdrop, leaders from the public and private sectors are meeting this week at the World Economic Forum’s annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland. High on the agenda will be the need to drive a rapid acceleration in scientific and medical breakthroughs through a renewed focus on public-private partnerships as a driver for building new, sustainable systems in and out of health and healthcare.
The good news is that we are already seeing signs of progress. Between 2011-2020, the US Food & Drug Administration alone approved an average of 41 new molecular entities to be used in the development of treatments — nearly double the number in the previous decade. Furthermore, over the same period we also saw groundbreaking advances, including cures for previously chronic diseases and the emergence of new classes of therapeutics and vaccines.
Against this fast-moving backdrop the forum’s Platform for Shaping the Future of Health & Healthcare has found four reasons for optimism, fuelled by collaborations in the global health space and pulling through lessons learnt over the last two years in discovering and delivering medical breakthroughs to the market:
Public-private partnerships that build trust
Of course, all of these advances rely on the right supporting systems being in place, particularly governance and privacy frameworks when it comes to personal data and the way that it is processed. As Covid-19 has shown, when people don’t trust systems, such as those relating to vaccine development or deployment, confidence can suffer with serious consequences for public health. Public and private stakeholders must work together to ensure that sustainable, robust structures are in place to underpin progress.
With an unparalleled focus on health from all stakeholders, new structures and systems, and AI and big data beginning to demonstrate their full impact, there is much to be optimistic about for the future of global health, all of which hold and require opportunities for public-private collaboration.
• McCain is head: healthcare initiatives, and Bishen head: shaping the future of health & healthcare, at the World Economic Forum.
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Published by Arena Holdings and distributed with the Financial Mail on the last Thursday of every month except December and January.