Science | May 12, 2021
“It’s a frank assessment of literally systematic failure in the COVID response at every level, from WHO down to country level,” says Lawrence Gostin, director of the O’Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law at Georgetown University. But Gostin says the panel is vague on how to bring about the massive changes it seeks and has missed an opportunity to call out countries’ bad behavior, including China’s early handling of the outbreak. “The independent panel had the opportunity to give WHO political cover to name names, to identify fault honestly where it occurs. And they didn’t do that,” he says.