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WHO, Germany launch new global hub for pandemic intelligence

Geneva/Berlin, May 6 (MNN) The WHO and Germany have launched a new global hub for pandemic and epidemic intelligence to create shared and networked access to vital multi-sectoral data, driving innovations in data analytics and building the communities of practice needed to predict, prevent, detect, prepare for and respond to worldwide health threats.

The Berlin-based hub will develop tools and predictive models for risk analysis; and to monitor disease control measures and infodemics, the world body said.

German Chancellor Dr Angela Merkel said: “The current Covid-19 pandemic has taught us that we can only fight pandemics and epidemics together. The new WHO Hub will be a global platform for pandemic prevention, bringing together various governmental, academic and private sector institutions. I am delighted that WHO chose Berlin as its location and invite partners from all around the world to contribute to the WHO hub.”

The WHO Hub for Pandemic and Epidemic Intelligence is part of WHO’s Health Emergencies Programme and will support the work of public health experts and policy-makers in all countries with insights so they can take rapid decisions to prevent and respond to future public health emergencies.

“We need to identify pandemic and epidemic risks as quickly as possible, wherever they occur in the world. For that aim, we need to strengthen the global early warning surveillance system with improved collection of health-related data and inter-disciplinary risk analysis,” said Jens Spahn, German Minister of Health.

“One of the lessons of COVID-19 is that world needs a significant leap forward in data analysis to help leaders make informed public health decisions,” said Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General.

“This requires harnessing the potential of advanced technologies such as artificial intelligence, combining diverse data sources, and collaborating across multiple disciplines. Better data and better analytics will lead to better decisions.”

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