Monday, 10 August, 2020


COVID-19 Pandemic Far From Being Over, WHO Warns

Better late than never: WHO sending team to China to investigate coronavirus origins WATCH: WHO chief says COVID-19 pandemic is ‘not even close to being over’
Bennie Garza | 03 July, 2020, 18:58

"Knowing the source of the virus is very, very important", Tedros said.

"Some countries ... have taken a fragmented approach".

Ryan said the WHO was trying to verify reports of hoarding of medical supplies in the USA - which has the world's highest COVID-19 death toll at more than 127,000 - and wanted to ensure everyone has access to life-saving materials. "We have to learn to live with this virus".

Six months since the new coronavirus outbreak, the pandemic is still far from over, the World Health Organisation said on Monday, warning that "the worst is yet to come".

This comes as India's Bharat Biotech's Covid-19 vaccine has been approved for human trials, making it India's first domestic candidate to get the green light from the government's drug regulator as cases surge in a country with more than 1.3 billion people.

Six months have passed since the World Health Organization was informed on December 31 of previous year about cases of pneumonia with an unknown cause in China.

In urging countries to get on top of the issue, Tedros referred to the determination of World Health Organization emergencies director Dr. Michael Ryan, who previously tackled the Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

The world has seen "heartwarming acts of resilience, inventiveness, solidarity, and kindness", he said, but it had also witnessed "concerning signs of stigma, misinformation, and the politicization of the pandemic".

Unless global unity replaces fractious division, "the worst is yet to come". He pointed to contact tracing work done in volatile eastern provinces of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, where an Ebola outbreak has formally ended after almost two years.

"The reality is this is not close to being over", Tedros told reporters. "And we need to focus on that", he said, in an apparent reference to the growth of the virus in parts of Africa and Latin America.

Tedros also announced an updated and detailed timeline of the WHO's response to the pandemic for the public to understand how the United Nations health body has been responding to the outbreak.

These include empowering communities with information and measures to stay healthy and safe; suppression of transmission; improve surveillance to find cases; saving lives with accessible medical interventions, accelerating research and showing political leadership to implement a comprehensive strategy.

On Monday, Canada's chief public health officer, Dr. Theresa Tam, said Canada has flattened the curve faster than countries such as the UK, Italy, and the US. U.S. officials on Sunday reported around 44,700 new cases and 508 additional deaths.

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