Gravediggers wear protective suits as they work during the burial of Tereza Santos who died from the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), at Vila Formosa cemetery in Sao Paulo, Brazil March 9, 2021. REUTERS/Carla Carniel

Research on Exotic Viruses Needs Full Transparency and Strict Oversight

In Global Featured, News by Brian Shepherd

With an increasing number of scientists raising their concerns over research on exotic viruses worldwide and the debate on SARS-CoV-2’s origin still raging, AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) urges all countries to promote international transparency and strict oversight on work with highly-contagious, pandemic-capable viruses.

“Governments globally must fully disclose all aspects of scientific work on potentially dangerous zoonotic viruses and other infectious microbes, along with implementing stricter safeguards and regulations on this type of research. As we’ve seen with the debate around the origin of COVID-19, China’s lack of transparency has been an enormous barrier to finding out how this deadly pandemic got its start,” said Dr. Adele Schwartz Benzaken, AHF Senior Global Medical Director. “Along with transparency and oversight, extensive justification and rationale must accompany research on dangerous pathogens, as accidents have and will continue to happen. An all-encompassing new pandemic accord should include these points and be able to enforce them.”

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