Vice President Kamala Harris Tells U.N. To Prepare For Next Pandemic
President Biden And Vice President Harris Participate In Virtual Leaders Summit On Climate WASHINGTON, DC - APRIL 22: U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris speaks during a virtual Leaders Summit on Climate with 40 world leaders in the East Room of the White House April 22, 2021 in Washington, DC. President Biden pledged to cut greenhouse gas emissions by half by 2030. (Photo by Al Drago-Pool/Getty Images)
Al Drago-Pool/Getty Images

On Monday, Vice President Kamala Harris told members of the United Nations that it is time for leaders around the world to begin considering what actions they will take when responding to the next global pandemic.

“At the same time that the world works to get through this pandemic, we also know that we must prepare for the next,” Harris said.

In excerpts of Harris’ remarks received by The Associated Press before the event, Harris discussed which areas of focus will be important for the United States and other countries.

“The steps include improving accessibility to health systems, investing in science, health workers and the well-being of women, and surging capacity for personal protective equipment and vaccine and test manufacturing,” The AP reported.

“We have been reminded that the status quo is not nearly good enough, and that innovation is indeed the path forward,” Harris said.

Biden’s ambassador to the U.N., Linda Thomas-Greenfield, is also scheduled to deliver remarks at the virtual event on Monday, according to the outlet. Thomas-Greenfield plans to call on countries to “build the pandemic preparedness architecture for the future.”

“The takeaway from this past year is clear: The world barely withstood this pandemic,” Thomas-Greenfield reportedly said in portions of her prepared remarks. “We must be ready for the next.”

COVID-19 cases have notably risen sharply in India, with Worldometers data reporting 313,894 new cases and 2,640 new deaths in the country per Monday’s update. 

President Joe Biden spoke with Prime Minister Narendra Modi of India on Monday, stating that the United States will work closely with the country as COVID-19 cases surge throughout the nation.

The White House released a readout of the call, saying:

The President pledged America’s steadfast support for the people of India who have been impacted by the recent surge in COVID-19 cases. In response, the United States is providing a range of emergency assistance, including oxygen-related supplies, vaccine materials, and therapeutics. Prime Minister Modi expressed appreciation for the strong cooperation between both countries. The two leaders resolved that the United States and India will continue to stand shoulder-to-shoulder in the effort to protect our citizens and the health of our communities. 

Biden is set to address a joint session of Congress on Wednesday as his first 100 days in office come to a close. He will give his speech to “just 200 pre-screened individuals, almost exclusively members of Congress, rather than to all 535 members of Congress, members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, members of the Supreme Court, his presidential cabinet, and a host of invited guests, as is typical,” according to The Daily Wire.

The Daily Wire reported: 

The Biden White House likely hopes the speech will reignite American trust in the new administration. Although most presidents have high approval ratings during their first 100 days in office, Biden has struggled to keep his approval over 50%, according to recent polls. A Washington Post/ABC News poll found that Americans are particularly unsure about Biden’s handling of border issues, and would prefer he works with Republicans to handle immigration reform rather than try to press through legislation with just Democrat support.

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