'Health comes first in the face of Covid-19,' assure ECLAC and PAHO
Santiago de Chile, (Prensa Latina) The Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) and the Pan American Organization of the Health (PAHO) assured on a brief on Thursday that only by flattening the contagion curve of Covid-19 cases can economies be reactivated.
The joint report, 'Health and the economy: a convergence needed to address Covid-19 and retake the path of sustainable development in Latin America and the Caribbean,' proposes an approach with sanitary, economic and social policies to mitigate the pandemic, and rebuild countries in a sustainable and inclusive way.
Presenting the report simultaneously in Santiago de Chile and in Washington, Alicia Barcena, ECLAC's Executive Secretary, assured that 'advancing on equality is essential to control the pandemic and a sustainable economic recovery.'
She noted that a strategy must be implemented to overcome the structural weaknesses of the countries, for which it is essential to change the development strategy in the region, underscoring that 'there is no dilemma between healthcare and the economy, but rather healthcare comes first.'
Meanwhile, Carissa Etienne, PAHO's Director, said that Latin America and the Caribbean face 'an unprecedented challenge, which requires solid healthcare systems because it is a fundamental human right and access to them must be universal, without anyone being left behind,' and that the economic recovery also depends on those healthcare systems.
The report concludes that there is no economic opening possible without the contagion curve being controlled, or reactivation without a clear plan of action to avoid another peak in contagion; and that sanitary measures must be taken with other social and economic measures to mitigate the effects of the crisis.
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