Bill Gates has warned governments to prepare for smallpox terror attacks and future pandemics by investing billions into research and development.
He said that countries like the US and the UK must spend “tens of billions” to fund the research adding that while it may be expensive, it could lead to the eradication of the flu and common cold.
“I’m hoping in five years, I can write a book called, ‘We are ready for the next pandemic’, but it’ll take tens of billions in R&D – the US and the UK will be part of that”, he said.
“It’ll take probably about a billion a year for a pandemic Task Force at the WHO level, which is doing the surveillance and actually doing what I call ‘germ games’ where you practise.”
The Microsoft founder suggested that the ‘germ games’ could prepare nations for bio-terrorism such as smallpox attacks on airports. Mr Gates warned that bioterrorism caused epidemics could be worse than naturally occurring ones.