The World Health Organization on Tuesday formally launched the Science Council which aims to improve the global health body's delivery of its services.
The council mainly has two functions; (1) to ensure WHO anticipates and remains abreast of the latest scientific developments and identifies opportunities to harness those developments to improve global health and (2) to ensure the excellence, relevance and efficacy of WHO's core technical functions, including global public health goods that are norms and standards and research.
Speaking at the launch of the council, the WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom reiterated the importance of science in the formulation of preparedness and response plans to health issues.
"The (COVID-19) pandemic has taught us that science is not an abstract intellectual pursuit; it can be the difference between life and death," said Tedros.
"The pandemic has also demonstrated that although science can deliver life-saving solutions, there are many other factors that determine whether or not all people are able to enjoy the benefits of science," he added.
The launch of the Science Council comes nearly one month after WHO joined leaders from around the world in fronting a global health treaty that would obligate all countries to unite in the fight against any future pandemics. This plan aims to alienate nationalistic tendencies that prompt nations to seek singular responses to the crises.
By Tuesday, the number of COVID-19 infections reported globally had surpassed the 148 million mark with deaths exceeding 3.12 million, according to the latest figures from the Johns Hopkins University.