Coronavirus (1217) Tanzania rethinks its approach to COVID-19

8 April, 2021

Extracts from the Devex news site and a comment from me below. Read online: https://www.devex.com/news/in-brief-tanzania-rethinks-its-approach-to-co...

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Tanzania’s new president said she plans to form a committee of experts to evaluate the nation’s COVID-19 response, suggesting a shift from the government’s adamant denial of the disease’s presence in the country...

What’s next: Hassan suggested that the country might start publishing data again on positive COVID-19 cases and that the government will take a science-based approach to the response.

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Comment (NPW): This shift away from denialism and towards evidence-informed policy is of course welcome. But it is extraordinary how individual heads of democratic countries can dominate with impunity the public health of their populations, with disastrous consequences. Work by HIFA with the New York Law School in 2012/13 would suggest that governments have a legal obligation under international human rights law to protect thei populations from health misinformation, and yet several heads of state have emerged as drivers of such misinformation.

Neil Pakenham-Walsh, HIFA Coordinator, neil@hifa.org www.hifa.org