Trade, Travel and Disease: The Role of Law in Pandemic Preparedness
Asian Journal of WTO & International Health Law and Policy, Vol. 5, No. 2, pp. 301-330, September 2010
29 Pages Posted: 23 Dec 2010 Last revised: 2 Feb 2011
Date Written: September 30, 2010
In 2009 the world experienced an influenza pandemic caused by the H1N1 virus. While the pandemic was milder then expected, it nonetheless provided the world with an opportunity to do real-time testing of pandemic preparedness. This paper examines the threats to human health posed by infectious diseases and the challenges for the global community in development of effective surveillance systems for emerging infectious diseases. In 2005 a new revised version of the International Health Regulations (IHR) was adopted. The requirements of the IHR (2005) are outlined and considered in light of the constraints facing resource-poor countries. Finally, the paper addresses the role of domestic law-making in supporting public health preparedness and articulates a number of ethical principles that should be considered when developing new public health laws.
Keywords: Pandemic Flu, WHO, IHR, Avian Influenza, H1N1, International Health Regulation
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