Building Global Health Security from the Ground Up

Aspen Global Innovators | June 1, 2020

Peggy Clark, Agnes Binagwaho, Raj Panjabi, Ngozi Erondu, Prabhjot Singh & Christopher Kirchhoff

At the 2017 Aspen Ideas: Health festival, Aspen Ideas Incubator participants explored new solutions to prepare for the next pandemic. As COVID-19 continues to spread in the US and across the world, what lessons should resurface from the Ebola crisis and community-led pandemic response efforts?

Image from the Aspen Institute

Community health workers, social media networks, and local residents serve as the first line of defense against global health risks, especially infectious diseases and bioterrorism. While top-down initiatives provide essential resources to detect looming threats, including sophisticated surveillance and diagnostic tools, outbreaks are most likely to be detected first at the local level. Right now, the lines of communication that should tie governments and large-scale NGOs to people on the ground are fractured or nonexistent. How do we form partnerships that empower residents of neighborhoods and towns, in urban and rural settings, to serve as the eyes and ears of global health security?

Watch the full session from Aspen Ideas: Health.