The COVID-19 pandemic continues to highlight how social inequities drive health outcomes and how we need urgent action to address these inequities. Social protection systems have been one of the most effective instruments to mitigate the social, economic and health impacts of the COVID-19 crisis. As the pandemic spread around the world, countries were challenged by the cracks in their social protection systems and had to swiftly adapt. Test, trace, and isolate has been one of the cornerstones of the pandemic response, however, this only works with paid sick leave and other social protection schemes. The need for a collective social and health response that addresses the different needs of various population groups, including non-binary people and women, people with disabilities, people of colour, etc., is clear.
In this session, we will discuss with experts from diverse disciplines and global regions, the challenges and opportunities that the health sector has to promote social protection. The audience will be invited to participate in the discussion and brainstorm on the biggest challenges, as well as solutions and opportunities, to build back fairness out of this global crisis.