World Health Organization to focus fight vs. COVID-19 in China

China Daily via REUTERS

LISTEN FEB 12 2020

The world health body also said that it had activated a UN Crisis Management Team, to be led by Dr Mike Ryan that will help the organisation focus on the health response while the other agencies could bring their expertise to bear on the wider social, economic and developmental implications of the outbreak so we are all working to our strengths.

He said all countries should be "as aggressive as possible" and not allow the virus space for regional transmission.

Researchers said that having a name is important as it prevents the use of other names that can be inaccurate and stigmatising.

In scientific and medical literature, COVID-19 has been referred to as 2019nCoV, certainly not a catchy name.

Despite the ongoing global research effort, the World Health Organization chief estimated that it could take 18 months for the first Covid-19 vaccines to be ready.

"As for the virus causing COVID-2019, it will be called severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2" or SARS-CoV-2.

As of Wednesday morning, Geneva time, there were 44,730 cases of COVID-19 in China, with 1,114 deaths. The number of deaths have surpassed the death toll of SARS epidemic in 2002-2003.

At the end of a two-day meeting on research and innovation into measures to tackle the new viral outbreak, Tedros welcomed the energy and enthusiasm of scientists starting work.

Ghebreyesus said China gave World Health Organization this opportunity as the majority of the cases are found in the country.

China reported yesterday its lowest number of new coronavirus cases in two weeks.

While reiterating that now is a window of opportunity to fight the disease as most of the cases have so far remained in China, Dr Tedros also expressed his concerns that the virus could spread to countries with weaker public health systems and create havoc. Discard the tissue immediately after use, and wash your hands thereafter. Go for a diagnosis if you have travelled to China recently. The virus has spread to more than 20 countries of the world including Wuhan, the capital of the same province.

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