Investigations needed on failures of response
In some respects, COVID-19 may seem like a bad dream for many Americans, even though it is far from stamped out in our country. One aspect of recovery — placing blame — already is well along.
But recriminations that were common during the height of the epidemic are trailing off. That should not happen. Learning what went wrong — more particularly, who was asleep at the switch during the pandemic’s early days — needs to continue.
We have known for some time that the World Health Organization failed badly. WHO officials waited until COVID-19 had begun spreading out of China to declare a global health emergency. By then, such a warning was too late.
And during the first several weeks of the outbreak in China, WHO insisted COVID-19 was not as communicable as normal influenza. We learned quickly that was terribly wrong.
Investigations of what could have been done better are imperative. But no more needs to be known to conclude that WHO simply cannot be relied upon in the future.