WHO Predicts COVID Could Still ‘Echo Around the World’

WHO Predicts COVID May Nonetheless ‘Echo Across the World’

March 17, 2022 — After a number of weeks of declines in new reported instances of COVID-19, the numbers are growing globally as soon as once more, significantly in elements of Asia and Western Europe, the World Well being Group says.

“These will increase are occurring regardless of reductions in testing in some international locations, which implies the instances we’re seeing are simply the tip of the iceberg,” WHO Director-Basic Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, PhD, mentioned at a information briefing Wednesday.

In consequence, native outbreaks and surges in COVID-19 instances are doubtless, “significantly in areas the place measures to forestall transmission have been lifted,” he mentioned.

And loss of life charges stay excessive in many countries, significantly these with low ranges of vaccination.

“Every nation is going through a special state of affairs with totally different challenges, however the pandemic will not be over,” Tedros mentioned.

“I repeat, the pandemic will not be over.”

His assertion comes amid a reported 46% enhance in COVID-19 instances within the U.Ok. and a soar in case numbers in China. Across the globe, weekly COVID-19 instances are up 8%, the WHO introduced, regardless of a major discount in testing for COVID-19.

Given these stories, “we must be very cautious. We have to watch this very rigorously, and we have to give attention to getting essentially the most weak appropriately vaccinated,” mentioned Michael Ryan, MD, government director of the WHO Well being Emergencies Program.

Pockets of Pandemic Attainable

“This virus remains to be shifting round fairly simply. Within the context of waning immunity and the truth that vaccines do not work completely, the chances are high that this virus will echo world wide,” Ryan mentioned.

The coronavirus can persist for a very long time, even in small communities, ready for its subsequent alternative to unfold.

“It’s going to survive in these pockets for months and months till one other pocket of susceptibility opens up,” Ryan mentioned.

The COVID-19 Image in Ukraine

Even because the battle in Ukraine enters its fourth week, the COVID-19 surveillance and reporting system stays largely intact, mentioned Adelheid Marschang, MD, the senior emergency officer for the WHO Well being Emergencies Program.

“We see on the similar time that the testing has decreased,” she mentioned.
“Nonetheless, now we have captured now, I believe, one thing like greater than 30,000 new instances.”

Recognizing Pandemic Fatigue

The issues driving the worldwide will increase in case detection “are the identical elements which have been driving transmission of this virus for the reason that starting of the pandemic,” mentioned Maria Van Kerkhove, PhD.

“We utterly perceive that the world wants to maneuver on from COVID-19. However this virus spreads very effectively between individuals,” mentioned Van Kerkhove, technical lead for COVID-19 response on the WHO and a Well being Emergencies Program professional.

“If we do not have the fitting interventions in place, the virus will take alternatives to proceed to unfold. And the extra the virus spreads, the extra alternatives it has to vary.”

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