The World Health Organization (WHO) and the Federal Republic of Germany will establish a new global hub for pandemic and epidemic intelligence, data, surveillance and analytics innovation.
The Hub, based in Berlin and working with partners around the world, will lead innovations in data analytics across the largest network of global data to predict, prevent, detect prepare for and respond to pandemic and epidemic risks worldwide.
German Federal Chancellor Dr Angela Merkel said the current Covid-19 pandemic has taught them that they 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 be a new collaboration of countries and partners worldwide, driving innovations to increase availability and linkage of diverse data; develop tools and predictive models for risk analysis; and to monitor disease control measures, community acceptance and infodemics.
Critically, the WHO Hub 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.
“Germany has consistently been committed to support WHO’s work in preparing for and responding to health emergencies, and the WHO Hub is a concrete initiative that will make the world safer.”
Working with partners globally, the WHO Hub will drive a scale-up in innovation for existing forecasting and early warning capacities in WHO and Member States.
At the same time, the WHO Hub will accelerate global collaborations across public and private sector organizations, academia, and international partner networks.
It will help them to collaborate and co-create the necessary tools for managing and analyzing data for early warning surveillance. It will also promote greater access to data and information.
“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.”