Early in the pandemic, WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom, UN Secretary-General António Guterres, and many other leaders in health, called for ‘national unity and global solidarity’. They urged the global community to work collaboratively and cooperatively to tackle the pandemic, in recognition of our interconnectedness and our shared vulnerabilities.
Over the course of the year, there have been extraordinary acts of solidarity and expressions of ‘togetherness’, but there have also been many challenges. From politicization of the pandemic and the response efforts to resource-hoarding, travel restrictions, trade bans, and misinformation, the multilateral system has been truly tested – and the test is not over.
Panellists, including Keizo Takemi, Mary Robinson, and Zsuzsanna Jakab, reflect on the concept of solidarity in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic and discuss the ways in which solidarity has been both fostered and undermined.
Professor Keizo Takemi, Goodwill Ambassador for Universal Health Coverage, World Health Organization
Mary Robinson, Chair, The Elders
Dr Zsuzsanna Jakab, Deputy Director General, World Health Organization
Chair: Robert Yates, Executive Director, Centre for Universal Health, Chatham House