Lessons From The Covid-19 Response
TerraGreen|April 2020
The global Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has transformed lives all over the world. Nations have been closing their borders. There are lockdowns in some countries and restrictions on public gatherings in others. Businesses have been hard hit with the transport, tourism, hotel and restaurant industries being the worst affected. The world economy is entering a recession. In this article, Ajay Shankar and TCA Avni discuss a few lessons that should be learnt globally from the present crisis engulfing the whole world. Creation of spare healthcare capacities is clearly a necessity across the world. Managing communication would also be an increasing challenge.
Ajay Shankar and TCA Avni

Disaster management has usually meant responding to an extreme event in a limited geographical area; a tsunami, a severe drought, a flood, a severe hurricane, an earthquake, or an accident in a nuclear plant. But, this time governments and societies have had to respond to the global pandemic of coronavirus without being able to rely on past precedents. Most disasters, whether they are of geophysical, climatological, or metrological origin, have a limited geographical impact, allowing the damage caused to be mitigated through mobilization of resources from other parts of the country and elsewhere. Experience has resulted in progressive improvement in responses. While a severe cyclone on the east coast of India would result in the loss of thousands of lives in the coastal villages earlier, timely advance warning on mobile phones and assisted evacuations have brought down loss of lives to negligible levels. Global epidemics – and even pandemics – too have had less severe impacts on the national economy and hardly any on the global economy in recent decades.

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