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WHO Warns Pandemic Speeding Up Worldwide

WHO Warns Pandemic Speeding Up WorldwideWHO Warns Pandemic Speeding Up Worldwide

The coronavirus pandemic is accelerating around the world as many countries that reopened their economies see a resurgence in Covid-19 cases, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, director general of World Health Organization, said on Monday.
“Although many countries have made some progress, globally, the pandemic is actually speeding up,” he said during a virtual news conference from the agency’s Geneva headquarters. “We all want this to be over. We all want to get on with our lives, but the hard reality is that this is not even close to being over.” 
The virus has infected more than 10.1 million people around the world and killed more than 502,000 people so far, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University, CNBC reported. 
More than 60% of daily new cases came from countries in the Americas on Sunday, according to data published by WHO.
More than 23% of the 189,077 new cases reported globally on Sunday came from the US, according to WHO’s data. Brazil was the only country in the world to report more new cases on Sunday than the US, according to WHO. 
“Some countries have now experienced a resurgence of cases as they start to reopen their economies and societies,” Tedros said. “Most people remain susceptible. The virus still has a lot of room to move.”
The US is among the countries experiencing a resurgence of infection after reopening businesses and easing restrictions across large swaths of the country. New cases have surged in several states across the nation, setting new records almost daily, driven mostly by expanding outbreaks in the American South and West. Florida, Texas, California and Arizona are just some of the states that reported record-high counts of daily new cases last week.
As cases in the US have continued to increase, the average age of patients has declined, according to state officials in Florida, Texas and elsewhere. Some state officials say that’s why Covid-19 deaths have dropped even as cases surge since the virus is more fatal in older populations. 
However, several health officials, including White House health advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci, have warned that deaths will increase over time, especially as younger patients infect older and more vulnerable people.
“The continued strategy of testing broadly for the virus, investigating infections, identifying people who might have been exposed, isolating infected people and improving treatment for patients will save lives,” Tedros said.
“The single most important intervention for breaking chains of transmission is not necessarily high-tech and can be carried out by a broad range of profession. It’s tracing and quarantine contacts.”
The WHO chief said six months since the virus started, it could be like a broken record to say exactly the same thing, but the same thing works, stressing on “test, test, isolate, quarantine cases”.
Tedros specifically cited dexamethasone, a cheap and widely available steroid, as an example of how clinicians have learned to provide better care for Covid-19 patients and save lives. Researchers at Oxford University released results from their trial earlier this month that showed the steroid can cut the risk of death by a third for Covid-19 patients on ventilators, and by a fifth for those on supplemental oxygen.
He noted that some governments should consider replicating South Korea’s strategy for testing, contact tracing and isolating infected people, adding that governments should involve the community in any efforts to ramp up testing, tracing and isolating.
“Countries need to come together to learn from one another’s experiences in combating the virus,” Tedros said, emphasizing that the “lack of global solidarity” has hampered the global response.
“The worst is yet to come” as many nations and world leaders remain divided on how to combat the virus, Tedros said. “I’m sorry to say that, but with this kind of environment and condition, we fear the worst. And that’s why we have to bring our acts together and fight this dangerous virus together.” 
 

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