The rapid rise of COVID-19 in Myanmar has caught the attention of Asian neighbors and international organizations. Singapore, Vietnam, Thailand, South Korea, Japan, and China have provided aid to Myanmar to fight the virus. They are well aware that if the second wave in Myanmar is beyond control, it can become a threat to the health securities of the countries and the whole region.
An article published in the Quarterly Journal of Medicine (QJM) called for the formation of the ASEAN Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The article says “ASEAN countries are divided into the South East Asia Region (SEARO) and Western Pacific Region (WPRO) by the World Health Organization.”
“ASEAN CDC can collaborate in sharing of real-time surveillance data and best practices, eliminating wildlife trade, maintaining supply chains, combating disinformation and vaccine development. The organization can act as the permanent regional body to combat the current and future pandemics. Moreover, ASEAN CDC can enhance inter-regional collaboration between the SEARO and WPRO regions.”
ASEAN countries with weak health systems are especially vulnerable to new waves of COVID-19.