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The World Health Organization (WHO) can declare public health emergencies internationally to prevent the spread of any disease. This kind of emergency has been declared six times so far by combining the coronavirus. The World Health Organization declares a health emergency when a disease or epidemic is at risk of spreading globally.

When did the emergency be declared

The WHO has announced this once every two years since the word 'health emergency' has been eroded. However, the WHO takes a very careful job in declaring a health emergency as it also has a lot of economic concerns. It has a very bad effect, especially on sectors like tourism. However, WHO has faced criticism many times. In a case, they have been accused of declaring an emergency in a hurry, so many cases have to be delayed. Health emergencies were first implemented in 2005. At that time, viruses like SARS and H5N1 were spreading. Health emergencies have been declared six times since then. For the second time, a health emergency was declared on swine flu in 2009. Thereafter, from 2014 to 2016, Ebola, Polio in 2014, Zika in 2016, and Ebola in the Democratic Republic of Congo in 2019. 

Definition

There are two criteria for declaring an international health emergency on any disease or infection. First, the risk of disease should be in more than one country. The second is the need for "internationally coordinated efforts" to prevent the disease. According to the WHO's official definition, this means that the situation is serious, unprecedented, or beyond anticipation. The Emergency Committee of the International Health Regulation convenes a meeting to discuss the situation. The International Health Regulation covers all the 196 member countries of the WHO. After analyzing all other evidence from humans of the disease to humans and all other evidence, the final decision is to be taken by the Director-General of the WHO. Currently, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus is the director-general of WHO.

What is the meaning of International Health Emergencies?

After the announcement, steps are taken on public health. Financial assistance and resources are immediately deployed to prevent the spread of the disease and prevent it from spreading internationally. Instructions on trade and travel can be issued. Passengers can be checked at airports. However, who is generally not in favor of restrictions that bring barriers to trade. In order to deal with such a situation, the WHO's instructions place more emphasis on preventing the disease or infection at its source site. According to the rules, the affected countries need to be transparently aware of the disease situation and are ready to keep infected people separated.

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