Approaching COVID-19 in East and Southeast Asia



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The COVID-19 pandemic is a world crisis unlike any other in recent history. While many states struggled to adapt to the change in world order East and Southeast Asian nations became beacons of inspiration due to their efficient and effective responses. This research project gathers information on the practices of various Asian nations, including details about the healthcare system, testing procedures, contact tracing methods, crisis communication, socio-economic measures, and the success or failure of nations re-opening. This information was then analyzed to determine what factors and practices encouraged success and failure from states, based on these conclusions recommendations on how to handle the pandemic for Western nations were developed. The countries analyzed include China, South Korea, Japan, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Viet Nam, Cambodia, Thailand, the Philippines, Singapore, and Indonesia. After reviewing the information it can be concluded that East and Southeast Asian countries excelled at handling the pandemic due to factors such as previous experience in outbreak management and distinct cultural attitudes which encouraged public cooperation. In order for Western nations to more effectively manage the COVID-19 states need to adopt measures such as increasing healthcare capacity, clear crisis communication, addressing marginalized populations, and advancing contact tracing.