In 2015, Bill Gates Warned: “We’re Not Ready for The Next Epidemic”

I am writing this blog while being stuck in quarantine.

In the Philippines, people are starting to adapt to the ‘new normal’ brought about by the spread of COVID-19, more than two months since the national government announced a ‘lockdown’ in its capital region. Still under the first wave, the number of positive cases is increasing at now more than 10,000 in total, and with no clear sign of flattening the curve. A vaccine is the only way out but it is still underway.

Such scenarios are similar around the world even among developed countries, with healthcare systems getting overwhelmed. But this would not have been the case if governments only gave attention to tech billionaire and philanthropist Bill Gates in 2015, when he told everyone about the next global issue we should all be concerned about. (Clue: it is not war.)

Aptly entitled, “The Next Outbreak? We’re Not Ready”, the TED Talk is a clear warning that was born out of lessons learned from the Ebola outbreak.

In his blog post of similar title, Gates declared, “As awful as this epidemic has been, the next one could be much worse. The world is simply not prepared to deal with a disease—an especially virulent flu, for example—that infects large numbers of people very quickly. Of all the things that could kill 10 million people or more, by far the most likely is an epidemic.”

Even in his TED Talk, Gates barely stuttered. He spoke to the audience in Vancouver with so much certainty as well as concern.

See the full video below, with its full transcript here:

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