The end of the COVID-19 pandemic is in sight: WHO — Global Issues

“We have never been in a better position to end the pandemic,” Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told journalists during his regular weekly press conference.

However, the director-general of the UN health agency explained that the world “isn’t there yet”.

The line ends in sight

“A marathon runner doesn’t stop at the finish line. She runs harder, with all her energy left. So we have to. We can see the ending line. We are in a winning position. But now is the worst time to stop running”, he emphasized.

He also warned that if the world does not take advantage of the opportunity now, there is still the risk of more variation, death, disruption and uncertainty.

“So take this chance,” he urged, announcing that WHO is releasing six brief policy briefs outlining key actions all governments must take now to “complete the race”.

People wear protective masks in Tokyo, Japan.

© ADB / Richard Atrero de Guzman

People wear protective masks in Tokyo, Japan.

Urgent call

The policy brief is a summary, based on evidence and experience from the past 32 months, that outlines what works best to save lives, protect health systems, and avoid economic and social disruption.

“[They] Is one Urgent calls for governments to take a hard look at their policies and strengthen them to COVID-19and future pathogens with pandemic potential,” explains Tedros.

Document, available onlineincludes recommendations regarding vaccination for most at-risk groups, continued testing and sequencing of the SARS-CoV-2 virus, and integration of an effective treatment for COVID-19 into the primary health care system.

They also called on authorities to plan for future increases, including securing additional supplies, equipment and medical staff.

The summary also includes communication tips, including training healthcare workers to identify and address misinformation, as well as creating high-quality information materials.

Committed to the future

Tedros stressed that WHO has been working since New Year’s Eve 2019 to combat the spread of COVID and will continue to do so until the pandemic is “really over”.

“We can end this pandemic together, but only if all countries, manufacturers, communities and individuals stand up to seize this opportunity,” he said.

Situations that can happen

Dr Maria Van Kerkhove, WHO technical team leader on COVID-19, stressed that the virus is still “vigorously circulating” around the world and the agency believes the number of reported cases is a low number. .

“We predict that there will be future waves of infection, likely at different times around the world due to different sub-variants of Omicron or even significantly different variants. concerns,” she said, echoing her earlier warning that the more circulating the virus, the more chance there is to change.

However, she said, these future waves do not need to translate into “wave or death” because there are now effective tools such as vaccines and antiviral drugs specifically for COVID- 19.

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