WHO Chief Worried about New COVID-19 Wave
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Publié le 20 juillet 2022, par Samir | 9 h 39 min
Temps de lecture : 3 minutes
On Tuesday, July 12, the head of the World Head Organization expressed concern that coronavirus cases and deaths are climbing, while monkeypox is also rising. So far, there have been nine thousand two hundred cases of monkeypox reported in sixty-three countries.
« New waves of the virus demonstrate that Covid-19 is nowhere near over, » Tedros said. He also noted that he is « concerned about a rising trend of deaths. »
WHO chief worried about new COVID-19 wave
Rising COVID-19 deaths are straining already stretched healthcare systems and health workers, said Tedros Ghebreyesus. He further noted that the virus remained a public health emergency of international concern and was at the WHO’s highest alert level. Ghebreyesus said subvariants of Omicron like BA.4 and BA.5 continue to drive waves of cases, hospitalizations and deaths worldwide. Surveillance, including testing and sequencing of the virus, has reduced significantly. It makes it more challenging to assess the impact of variants on transmission, disease, characteristics, and the effectiveness of countermeasures.
Dr. Tedros showed his concern in a tweet and said:
« There are now 9,200 monkeypox cases in 63 countries. The Emergency Committee will reconvene next week and look at trends, how effective the countermeasures are, and make recommendations for what countries and communities should do to tackle the outbreak.
. WHO is working closely with:
-civil society and the LGBTIQ+ community, esp. to tackle the stigma around the virus & spread information so people can stay safe
-countries & vaccine manufacturers to coordinate the sharing of vaccines
-experts to drive forward research & development
We must work to stop onward #monkeypox transmission. @WHO advises governments to implement contact tracing to help track and stem the virus while assisting people in isolation. »
According to the Statement on the twelfth meeting of the International Health Regulations (2005) Emergency Committee regarding the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic:
« On behalf of the WHO Director-General, the Executive Director of the WHO Health Emergencies Programme, Dr. Michael J. Ryan, welcomed Members and Advisors of the Emergency Committee, all convened by videoconference.
Dr. Ryan expressed concern regarding the current global COVID-19 epidemiological situation. Cases of COVID-19 reported to WHO had increased by 30% in the last two weeks, driven mainly by Omicron BA.4, BA.5, and other descendent lineages and the lifting of public health and social measures (PHSM). This increase in cases translated into pressure on health systems in several WHO regions. Dr. Ryan highlighted additional challenges to the ongoing COVID-19 response: recent changes in testing policies that hinder the detection of cases and the monitoring of virus evolution; inequities in access to testing, sequencing, vaccines, and therapeutics, including new antivirals; waning of natural and vaccine-derived protection; and the global burden of Post COVID-19 condition. »
« The Committee discussed the following issues: the impact of SARS-CoV-2 virus evolution on the public health response and capacities of health services; progress towards increasing COVID-19 vaccination coverage; changes in testing and surveillance strategies; societal and political risk perception and community engagement; equity and access to countermeasures, vaccines, and therapeutics; and maintaining political engagement while balancing the need to respond to other public health priorities and emergencies. »
Dr. Tedros shared his concern in another tweet as he said:
The #COVID19 Emergency Committee met & concluded that the outbreak remains a Public Health Emergency of International Concern. New waves of the virus show that the pandemic is not over. We must push back with safe & effective tools to prevent infections, hospitalizations & deaths. »
Second booster shots are recommended in Europe.
In other news, the WHO European authorities suggested COVID-19’s second booster shot for elderly and sensitive people due to increasing infectious cases. As per the call, the European Union’s health and medical agencies recommended a second booster for people aged sixty years and beyond.
« The updated interim recommendations on vaccination strategy come as cases continue to rise across the European Region, » stated Hans Kluge, WHO regional director for Europe. Due to the climbing number of infections, the health officials supported « a second booster dose to moderately and severely immuno-compromised individuals aged five years and above and their close contacts. »
Maria Van Kerkhove, the WHO’s Technical Lead Officer for Covid-19 said, « the virus is spreading at a very intense level at a global level, » though close observation like testing and sequencing to track and analyze strains, is decreasing.
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