The International Bar Association (IBA) COVID-19 Legal Policy Task Force has released a report detailing the pandemic’s impact in key legal areas and making concrete actionable recommendations to improve pandemic management in the future. The task force examined the impact of the pandemic on international legal systems, recognized the successes and failings of those systems in dealing with the outbreak and made practical recommendations for reforming existing laws or spreading new ones to improve the global response to pandemics.
The group suggests existing regimes be improved and a multilateral agreement pursued in distinct areas where a global consensus is more likely to be achieved quickly, including:
- Faster scientific reporting of pandemic outbreaks without political interference, enabling the investigation of pandemic causes and enactment of laws averting their recurrence
- Harmonization of border controls, travel, airport entries, customs, import-export rules and transportation, including, establishment of an international protocol for advance communication of border closures;
- Harmonization of laws regulating therapeutics and vaccines for fast track approval and reciprocal international recognition of national approvals and registrations
- Establishment of a pandemic authority in each country (acting on scientific evidence), regulating the communication between countries, strengthening the transfer of knowledge, isolated from political interference and reviewing the role of the World Health Organization (WHO).
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