World Health Day: Shyam Bishen

On this World Health Day, the World Economic Forum emphasises that only strong partnerships between the public and private sectors can enable us to improve the resilience of healthcare systems globally so they perform better in the face of a crisis. The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has tested health systems to their limits, and sometimes beyond them – with tragic consequences. For instance, the global shortage in health care workers, which was already a concern in 2016, was underlined and exacerbated by the pandemic. The World Health Organisation predicts that the health workers shortage may more than double from 7 million in 2016 to 18 million by 2030 - so steps should be taken to address this challenge now. Clearly, the world was caught unprepared by this crisis and we must learn lessons from it in order to prepare for and avert the worst health impacts of any future pandemic and the looming climate crisis - which is the single biggest health threat facing humanity. To this effect, the Forum is working with the multi-sector community to build a solid knowledge base, guide action by generating evidence-informed solutions, as well as drive cross-border and cross-sectoral collaboration so as to improve the crisis resilience of health systems across the globe. Change is needed today if we are to build sustainable health systems that are resilient to crises tomorrow.