Covid’s Emergency Status Is Discussed By A Who Panel

Approximately 40,000 deaths from COVID were reported last week – almost half of them in China

COVID-19’s emergency committee met on Friday to determine whether the ongoing pandemic still warrants the highest level of global alert. According to Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of the World Health Organization, global response to the crisis remains hindered.” He stated, “As we enter the fourth year of the pandemic, we are certainly in a much better position now than we were a year ago, when the Omicron wave was at its peak, and more than 70,000 deaths were being reported to WHO each week.”

Tedros stated that the weekly death rate had dropped below 10,000 in October, but has increased since December, and that the lifting of COVID restrictions in China has contributed to the increase in fatalities. In addition, he pointed out that there were almost 40,000 deaths. More than half of the incidents occurred in China, and the actual death toll is “certainly much higher.”

Taking place every three months, the panel on the crisis discusses the pandemic and reports to Tedros, who then decides whether the pandemic should be considered an international emergency.

During its meeting on Friday, the World Health Organization’s emergency committee discussed the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and its evolving variants. WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus emphasized the importance of vaccines, tests, and treatments in saving lives and reducing pressure on health systems.

However, he also highlighted the ongoing challenges in distributing these tools to those who need them most, including older individuals and healthcare workers. Misinformation and disinformation continue to erode public trust in these tools, and surveillance and genetic sequencing have dropped, making it more difficult to track and detect new variants. The committee, chaired by French doctor Didier Houssin, is set to conclude on Friday with the outcome to be announced in the following days.

Written by Aly Bukshi

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