Key findings from the analysis: Correlations between country readiness and their recovery rate

Figure 63: GHS Index 2019: Top 30 countries

Based on the initial findings, it is evident that a country’s healthcare readiness according to the GHS Index may not necessarily translate to a successful campaign in combatting COVID-19. Despite recording favourable scores across the six categories which measure improvement in global capability to prevent, detect and respond to infectious disease threats, a country’s actual implementation approach in practice during a pandemic may not prove as effective as its capability and capacity readiness suggests.

For example, the US is ranked number one in the overall GHS Index. However, it has been well documented that the country has been struggling to combat the spread of COVID-19. Other countries which have ranked highly in the GHS Index such as the UK, Sweden and France, have also fared relatively poorly in the management of COVID-19 as well, despite access to modern infrastructure, qualified healthcare professionals, and ample resources. Therefore, healthcare security and preparedness alone clearly do not guarantee a country’s ability to manage a pandemic. Instead, it can be accompanied by a measure of its ability in practice to respond, coordinate, communicate and rapidly mobilise the country into action.

However, there are also other countries high on the GHS Index that have done well to contain the spread of the pandemic, such as Australia, Thailand and South Korea. In general, it can be concluded that the common denominator across the successful countries is the anticipation, speed and coordination of deploying the highlighted intervention categories. The implementation model of these countries has been decisive and clear, based on lessons learnt from past pandemic experiences and trends from countries that were impacted during the early stages of the spread. Most countries that rank highly in the GHS Index and performed well in curbing the pandemic were early adopters and implementers of the intervention categories.

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