The World Must Be More Ready For Next Pandemic, Warns WHO Director-General

When the next pandemic comes, the world must be ready. History teaches us that outbreaks and pandemics are a fact of life : WHO Director-General

Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of the World Health Organization

World Health Organisation (WHO) Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus called on countries to invest in public health as Covid-19 will not be the last pandemic.

Speaking at a news briefing in Geneva, Tedros asserted, “This will not be the last pandemic. History teaches us that outbreaks and pandemics are a fact of life. But when the next pandemic comes, the world must be ready – more ready than it was this time.”

His statement comes as more than 27.19 million people have been reported to be infected by the novel coronavirus globally and 888,326 have died since the first cases were identified in China in December 2019.

In India, over the past couple of weeks, daily recoveries from the novel coronavirus have improved consistently in terms of absolute numbers even as new cases are rising in an unstoppable fashion. Single-day spike of 75,809 new Covid-19 cases and 1,133 deaths reported in India, in the last 24 hours. The total case tally stands at 42,80,423 including 8,83,697 active cases, 33,23,951 cured/discharged/migrated & 72,775 deaths, according to Ministry of Health

‘The pandemic – and the measures taken in many countries to contain it – have taken a heavy toll on lives, livelihoods and economies. But there have also been some unexpected benefits. In many places, we have seen a significant drop in air pollution’; Tedros told a news briefing in Geneva.

“Covid-19 is teaching all of us many lessons. In recent years, many countries have made enormous advances in medicine, but too many have neglected their basic public health systems, which are the foundation for responding to infectious disease outbreaks”, he added.

The World Health Organization does not expect widespread vaccinations against Covid-19 until the middle of next year, a spokeswoman said on Friday, stressing the importance of rigorous checks on their effectiveness and safety.

None of the candidate vaccines in advanced clinical trials so far has demonstrated a “clear signal” of efficacy at the level of at least 50% sought by the WHO, spokeswoman Margaret Harris said on Friday.

“We are really not expecting to see widespread vaccination until the middle of next year,” Harris told a U.N. briefing in Geneva.

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