Proposing a New Global Compact for Infectious Diseases

Addressing "a symmetric threat that imperils all nations" By Harvey Rubin , M.D., Ph.D. Director, Institute for Strategic Threat Analysis and Response (ISTAR) University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine PHILADELPHIA...

Implementation of the Compact would greatly minimize the profoundly negative impact of infectious diseases on national and international health, social and economic development and international security. The Compact drives innovation and progress in four interconnected core areas by linking compliance with benefits: a strong foundation of basic science feeds the anti-infective and vaccine pipeline which is rapidly shrinking; an effective shared epidemiologic/surveillance system can help predict the most significant microbial threats, which in turn increases our ability to create countermeasures; information technology and knowledge sharing will lower the barriers to entry to the field enabling the discovery and development of new drugs and vaccines; standardized regulatory regimes can modify and inform production and distribution initiatives that will change global epidemiological patterns, beginning the cycle again. Participation by stakeholders from the developing world as well as the developed world in all four missions of the Compact will ensure its enforceability.

Controlling communicable diseases on a global scale is a problem of deep complexity with many interdependent parts that can only be solved with an integrated approach that generates powerful incentives for participation. Most importantly, it has to be done as a partnership and it must be done soon.

SOURCE Institute for Strategic Threat Analysis and Response