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Year : 2017  |  Volume : 6  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 463-467

Politics of Ebola and the critical role of global health diplomacy for the CARICOM

Public Health and Primary Care, Faculty of Medical Sciences, The University of the West Indies, Trinidad, Tobago

Correspondence Address:
Vijay Kumar Chattu
Faculty of Medical Sciences, The University of the West Indies, Trinidad
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jfmpc.jfmpc_75_17

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The 2014 Ebola epidemic was the largest in history, affecting Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Nigeria, and Mali in West Africa. The International Health Regulations are legally binding in 194 countries including all the member states of WHO “to prevent, protect against, control, and provide a public health response to the international spread of disease.” Since the Caribbean Community region heavily depends on tourism, a single case of the disease anywhere in the region could have serious negative consequences for the rest of the region's tourism industry. Global health diplomacy brings together the disciplines of public health, international affairs, management, law, and economics and focuses on negotiations that shape and manage the global policy environment for health. The regional institutes such as Caribbean Public Health Agency should play a more proactive and pivotal role in the creation of regional response teams in all the island nations collaborating with the departments of public health and epidemiology at the regional campuses of The University of the West Indies. The role of global health diplomacy and its practice should be encouraged to reach a consensus among the stakeholders considering the threat to the health security in the region. There is a need for the cadre of global health diplomats who has a critical understanding of health and also the practice of diplomacy since such serious health issues have implications at the global level in this globalized world.

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