Johns Hopkins ranks Thailand 5th in global health security

Johns Hopkins University has ranked Thailand as the country with the 5th best health security in the world, a rise of one place compared to 2019, based in part on the Kingdom’s effective response to the coronavirus pandemic.

The University compiles and publishes its Global Health Security Index every two years. In the previous rankings, Thailand finished in 6th place. This year, the Kingdom came in behind the U.S., Australia, Finland and Canada. The only other Asian nation in the top ten was South Korea in 9th place.

Thailand finished 1st in the world in several of the index’s indicators. The Kingdom is ranked number one in laboratory supply chains, real-time surveillance and reporting, epidemiology workforce, emergency response preparedness and operations, infection control practices, reporting compliance and disaster risk reduction, financing, capacity to test and approve new countermeasures.

The Kingdom finished 3rd in national planning for zoonotic diseases. COVID-19 is a zoonotic disease, which is a disease that originated in an animal and transferred to humans.

Minister of Public Health Anutin Charnvirikul said that the performance of the Kingdom’s public health sector is the result of hard work and dedication from many parties.

“We could not have been successful in disease prevention and control without the cooperation of all parties in government, the private sector as well as citizens, especially the dedication of frontline medical professionals that have helped us keep the COVID-19 outbreak under control,” Anutin said.

Public health has long been a priority among Thais, from the royal family to humble villagers. The Kingdom’s public health system is reinforced by over one million village health volunteers who serve as scouts for disease outbreaks, provide very basic health care and link patients with doctors and hospitals.

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