National perspectives of COVID-19: case of Sri Lanka

Nishara Fernando, Dilanthi Amaratunga, Richard Haigh, Naduni Jayasinghe, Chandana Siriwardana, Ravindu Jayasekara

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


COVID-19 pandemic has given insights into the systemic risks of a hazard, demonstrating the potency of biological hazards to not only render one sector dysfunctional but also fail the entire system. The grave and devastating impacts of the current COVID-19 call for the need to assess the state of global and national preparedness for future pandemics. This chapter provides an outline of Sri Lanka's response to the COVID-19 pandemic while delving into the current status and gaps concerning preparedness for pandemics in the country. The analysis is aimed at providing key recommendations for policymakers to improve national-level preparedness for anticipated pandemic threats. This chapter has drawn on a review of secondary literature and primary data gathered through in-depth interviews conducted with key informants in the disaster management and public health sectors in the country. Findings show that while preparedness planning for biological hazards is predominantly a responsibility of the health sector in the country, there is a pressing need to strengthen such preparedness through a unified legal framework and system of governance that allow for the transfer of relevant expertise, infrastructure, and lessons learned from previous hazards contexts to situations of pandemics; the incorporation of pandemic preparedness into national-level DRR efforts and subnational-level DRR planning; intensifying national focus on building economic and social resilience; emulating a multisectoral approach, enhancing private sector participation, and establishing a national framework to foster preparedness for parallel hazards.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationPandemic Risk, Response, and Resilience
Subtitle of host publicationCOVID-19 Responses in Cities around the World
EditorsIndrajit Pal, Rajib Shaw
Number of pages15
ISBN (Electronic)9780323994361
ISBN (Print)9780323992770
Publication statusPublished - 20 May 2022


Dive into the research topics of 'National perspectives of COVID-19: case of Sri Lanka'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this