USAID plans for global recovery from COVID-19

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“Economic downturns and pandemics are always toughest on marginalized groups and tend to promote autocracy, corruption, and unrest,” Barsa said. “Going forward, we’ll continue to lead efforts to ensure the donor community is coordinated in its immediate and long-term response.”

More than 52 million cases of COVID-19 have been reported worldwide, leading to the deaths of more than 1.2 million people, according to data aggregated by Johns Hopkins University and reported by the website MarketWatch. The United States is supporting research on vaccines and treatments to address the disease, including several potential vaccines currently in the final stages of testing.

But COVID-19 is more than a health care crisis, Barsa said, and requires a new way of thinking about the agency’s humanitarian and development work. The economic and humanitarian disaster is pushing tens of millions of people into poverty and hunger. Supply chains have been disrupted, immunizations and elections have been delayed, and many people are out of school or work.

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