Illicit endangered wildlife trade in Möng La, Shan, Myanmar.
To better anticipate and manage the emergence of new pandemics, a paradigm shift is needed to take into account the complex interactions between human health, animal health, the environment and the economy.
One approach to figure out what to expect is to look at the experiences of different countries after they closed schools due to previous pandemics, war or industrial action.
An imam leads the prayer during the funeral for COVID-19 coronavirus victims at a mosque in Cape Town.
MARCO LONGARI /AFP - GettyImages
It is important that procedures surrounding funerals are developed by public health officials alongside traditional and religious authorities.
Pangolins have been found with covonaviruses that are genetically similar to the one afflicting humans today.
Jekesai Njikizana/AFP/Getty Images
Yellow fever, malaria and Ebola all spilled over from animals to humans at the edges of tropical forests. The new coronavirus is the latest zoonosis.
A child receives a vaccine against Ebola from a nurse in Goma on August 7, 2019.
AUGUSTIN WAMENYA/AFP via Getty Images
African governments should shift their attention to strengthening health systems so that they are better placed to respond to any pandemic.
A COVID-19-type pandemic had long been predicted, but our warnings weren't heeded. We need to start rethinking our approach to health now – even in countries like New Zealand.
Special steps need to be taken to blunt the impact of school closures, particuarly on girls.
Humans can identify asymptomatic cases, build trust and assauge fears. Apps cannot.
A bottle of Covid Organics, a herbal tea that authorities in Madagascar gave to students.
Photo by Rijasolo/AFP via Getty Images
Authorities around the world can do more to ensure that correct information and messages on the pandemic reach everybody.
A woman walks past a graffiti by Anthony Kihoro in Kenya sensitising people about the coronavirus.
Dennis Sigwe/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images
COVID-19 differs significantly from HIV and Ebola. But the potential consequences of having a misinformed public are similar.
The Egyptian pipistrelle bat is one of seven bat species associated with spreading the coronavirus Middle East Respiratory Syndrome.
Bats have been the reservoir for recent disease outbreaks, including SARS and the current COVID-19 pandemic. But it's human activity that allows the virus to cross over.
Survivors of sexual and gender-based violence suffer trauma that lasts long beyond medical crises.
Corbis News via GettyImages
During epidemics, the measures taken to protect populations and to keep health systems afloat leave women and girls vulnerable to violence.
Grafitti artists from Mathare Roots Youth Organisation pose in front of their latest mural advocating safety practices to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus. Nairobi/Kenya.
TONY KARUMBA/AFP via Getty Images
COVID-19 is having a significant impact on the health, economic and social status of slum dwellers.
The pangolin, one of the most poached animals in the world, could have served as an intermediate host in the transmission of SARS-CoV-2 to humans.
Covid-19, like other major epidemics, is not unrelated to the biodiversity and climate crisis we are experiencing.
Nurse Cheedy Jaja in Sierre Leone in 2015, where he helped treat patients with Ebola during the West Africa outbreak.
Rebecca E. Rollins/Partners in Health
Nurses on the front lines of a pandemic need education, training and institutional support.
A member of the South African National Defence Force hands out pamphlets informing township residents about COVID-19 in Johannesburg.
Ubuntu provides a language for people to participate in preventive action, even if this involves practices such as lockdowns.
One of the first babies born on 1 January 2020 in Lagos, Nigeria.
Olukayode Jaiyeola/NurPhoto via Getty Images
Unfortunately, disrespectful and neglectful treatment of women during childbirth, including verbal, physical and emotional abuse is not uncommon.
Some members of New York’s ultra-Orthodox Jewish community defied the government’s ban on gathering for Passover and other religious occasions, Brooklyn, April 16, 2020.
ANGELA WEISS/AFP via Getty Images
Given that some people look to religious authorities not health officials in times of crisis, faith leaders can promote hand-washing and social distancing to slow the spread of coronavirus.
Municipal workers block the streets of the Medina neighbourhood of Dakar, Senegal, on March 22, 2020 as a bulldozer demolishes informal shops in an effort to stop the spread of the coronavirus.
(AP Photo/Sylvain Cherkaoui)
African countries face unique challenges in their efforts to limit the spread of COVID-19, but lessons learned in other regions where the coronavirus has already peaked may be helpful.
Zoonotic diseases can emerge closer to home than you realise.