Geneva, August 2
The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic nonetheless constitutes a public well being emergency of worldwide concern (PHEIC), and long-term response efforts are wanted given an anticipated prolonged period of the pandemic, the World Health Organization (WHO) mentioned.
The WHO Emergency Committee on COVID-19, convened by WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus below the International Health Regulations (IHR), held its fourth assembly on Friday (July 31), WHO mentioned in a web-based assertion launched on Saturday, Xinhua information company reported.
The committee unanimously agreed that the outbreak nonetheless constitutes a PHEIC, and famous the significance of “sustained community, national, regional, and global response efforts,” mentioned the assertion.
Tedros had declared a PHEIC, WHO’s highest stage of alarm below IHR, on Jan. 30 at a time when there have been fewer than 100 instances and no deaths outdoors China. He issued the committee’s recommendation to States Parties as Temporary Recommendations below the IHR, in accordance with the assertion.
“The pandemic is a once-in-a-century health crisis, the effects of which will be felt for decades to come,” Tedros advised the committee in his opening remarks on Friday.
“Many countries that believed they were past the worst are now grappling with new outbreaks. Some that were less affected in the earliest weeks are now seeing escalating numbers of cases and deaths. And some that had large outbreaks have brought them under control,” Tedros mentioned.
The Emergency Committee suggested WHO to proceed to mobilize international and regional multilateral organizations and companions for COVID-19 preparedness and response, to assist member states in sustaining well being providers, whereas accelerating the analysis and eventual entry to diagnostics, therapeutics, and vaccines.
The committee suggested international locations to assist these analysis efforts, together with by means of funding, and to affix in efforts to permit equitable allocation of diagnostics, therapeutics and vaccines by participating within the Access to COVID-19 Tools (ACT) Accelerator amongst different initiatives.
The committee additionally suggested international locations to strengthen public well being surveillance for case identification and make contact with tracing, together with in low-resource, weak, or high-risk settings and to take care of important well being providers with adequate funding, provides, and human sources.–IANS