The COVID-19 crisis has generated enormous human, social and economic costs, claiming millions of lives and with many more suffering ill-health as a direct or indirect consequence of the virus. It has placed immense pressure on health care services, ones often already overstretched before the pandemic, and the pandemic is far from over.
Ensuring COVID-19 vaccines are accessible to all and containing and mitigating the virus continue to be essential. But so is making health systems stronger and more resilient, including through effective investment in primary care, health promotion and disease prevention. The pandemic has brought some encouraging signs of emerging systemic changes, with advances in digital healthcare delivery and better integrated care.