British Columbia Sun

The pandemic mess demonstrates the world isn’t ready for biological warfare

BC

Key takeaways: 

  • New technology has created it easier to custom-design pathogens for the full spread.
  • In the United States, the patchwork reply to COVID-19 pushed the pandemic to turn out of control.

With the world now in its third pandemic year, biosecurity and public health professionals say that COVID-19 and its variants have proved how vulnerable countries are to biological warfare.

“COVID was a wake-up call,” stated James Giordano, executive director of the Institute for Biodefense Research and a teacher of neurology at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C. He examines how bioscience technologies can be weaponized.

“What COVID got into the light is the absence of readiness for a biological danger, whether naturally arising or man-made.”

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biosecurity and public health professionals say that COVID-19 and its variants have proved how vulnerable countries are to biological warfare

In the United States, the patchwork reply to COVID-19 caused the pandemic to turn out of control in every single wave. Almost 980,000 Americans have been killed by the virus — a far higher casualty rate than other wealthy nations. China, meanwhile — an economic competitor of the U.S. with intimate connections to Russia — has followed a zero-tolerance plan. Any small group of COVID cases encourages the government to set strict lockdowns swiftly.

While this process is considered by many draconian, China claims it works. Out of 1.4 billion citizens, China reports fewer than 14,000 casualties (there is widespread skepticism regarding the precision of that figure). With 38 million, Canada has lost almost 38,000 lives to COVID.

The U.S. and Canada also set lockdowns, but distrust in government and science and rampant misinformation led small pockets of the population to oppose the measures loudly. And the jurisdictional division of management meant each region and state decided on their ways of action, with some opting for fewer rules than many other people.

Source – cbc.ca

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