The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has donated €93 million to coronavirus in emergency funding. The money helped China bolster epidemiological research, development of vaccines and diagnostics.
This was confirmed by Bill Gates in a letter published on 6 February:
“I’m Bill Gates, co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Over the years, I have had the opportunity to study diseases such as influenza, Ebola and now the COVID-19, including how epidemics begin, how to prevent them and how to react to them. Our foundation has committed up to 100 million U.S. dollars in order to help with the COVID-19 response worldwide, as well as 5 million U.S. dollars to support our homestate Washington”.
The founder of Microsoft gave a TED talk in 2015. He alerted in that speech about the crisis we’re now facing by stating that “we are not ready for the next epidemic”. Bill Gates gave his opinion during the talk, only one year after the Ebola outbreak, about the challenges the world would face.
“We’ve actually invested very little in a system to curb an epidemic, we are not ready. Let’s look at Ebola. We all read about it in newspapers. I followed it carefully through the case analysis tools we used to track polio eradication. And as you look at what went on, the problem wasn’t that there was a system that didn’t work well enough, the problem was that we didn’t have a system at all.”
That is why Gates said that the world would be infected with a virus, such as the one spread over the globe 5 years after his speech. You can have a virus where people feel well enough while they’re infectious, they may get on a plane or they may go to a market. Therefore, it would spread throughout the world very, very quickly.
However, despite the warnings, the foundation supported the huge Asian country without doubts when it needed the most in order to overcome the crisis. Xi Jinping, the President of the People’s Republic of China wrote that to prevail over a disease that threatens all, unity and cooperation is the most powerful weapon. “The Foundation has been quick in joining the global action and has played an active role in the global response against the outbreak”. I look forward to enhance coordination in the international community for the sake of the health of all,” Xi added.