Friday, 05 March, 2021


Health Services Witness COVID-19-Induced Disruption in 90% of Countries

WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus warned against complacency WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus warned against complacency
Patty Aguilar | 03 September, 2020, 05:01

"Avoid these amplifying events so that the other economic sectors can actually open up and the economy can go back into life", Tedros said.

Tedros said the world health body was aware that people were getting exhausted of restrictions and wanted the situation to return to normalcy after eight months of the pandemic. "Opening up without having control is a recipe for disaster", he said during a virtual briefing.

Dr. Mike Ryan, the agency's director of the Health Emergencies Program, said any country's vaccine policy "must be guided by the highest possible ethical standard".

Tedros said that the World Health Organization will continue to work with countries to provide tools to maintain essential services. Of the 20,000 people across 27 countries surveyed, China was the country most enthusiastic about a vaccine, with 97% in support, while people in Russian Federation were the least enthusiastic, with just 54% expressing a willingness to be vaccinated.

The reality is that coronavirus spreads easily, he said.

Speaking to BBC Today, the public health official said: "We're entering three phenomena".

Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus warned that countries should not reopen economies if they don't have control over the virus. But it can only be done if countries are in control of the transmission. "It's not a one size fits all, it's not all or nothing", said Ghebreyesus.

The first is to prevent large gatherings, with "explosive outbreaks" across the world linked to crowds at stadiums, nightclubs, places of worship and many other settings. COVID-19 spreads very easily among clusters of people.

"Decisions about how and when to allow gatherings of people must be taken with a risk-based approach, in the local context", he said.

Reduce deaths by protecting vulnerable groups, such as the elderly and essential workers.

"This virus thrives when we are divided", he said.

Dr. Tedros also urged individuals to wear face masks, observe social distancing and frequently wash their hands.

The fourth factor in safely easing restrictions is for governments to have a clear plan of action on how to find, isolate, test and care for COVID-19 cases, while also quickly tracing and quarantining close contacts. Stay-at-home orders and other restrictions are something that some countries felt they needed to do to take pressure off their health systems.

"We will defeat this second wave, and if we do it properly and we will, with a phased appropriate, safe and steady opening up, then we will avoid a third wave".

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