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Countries Had Enough Time to Respond to The Virus: Tedros Adhanom, WHO

The director-general of the World Health Organization (WHO) believes that the countries had enough time to respond to the coronavirus after the organization had declared a health emergency on January 30, 2020.

Tedros Adhanom. Pic: Screenshot from the Virtual Press Conference

“Based on the International Health Regulation (IHR) 2005, our work was to declare an international concern, which is the highest alert for an emergency. We declared this on January 30 when there were only 82 confirmed cases outside China,” said Tedros Adhanom, director-general of the World Health Organization in an online press conference on Wednesday.

He believes that the COVID-19 pandemic was declared at the right time and that the countries had the time to respond and be prepared for the pandemic. “Global emergency is discussed among experts. We have experts representing from across the world. It was on January 22, they first met and discussed that on the issue. They met again on January 30 and based on the criteria to judge the scale of the virus; all were convinced that it can be declared as an emergency. Based on experts all over the world and after using the criteria, they told me and that led to the announcement. Looking back, I believe that we declared the emergency at the right time. That was enough to respond and cut off the virus as there were only 82 cases.”

According to the WHO, on January 30, when the global health emergency was declared there were many countries with only a few cases. Europe had only 10 cases with five from France, one from Finland and four in Germany. UAE at that time had four cases and there were no cases in Africa.

The global number of positive cases has been over 2.5 million cases and over 160000 deaths. There are different trends in deferent regions. For now, Europe is at a stable number and the cases are declining, while in Central and South America there is an increase in positive cases. WHO updated that most of the countries are in the early stages of the virus spread. The countries who though were over the virus are seeing a resurgence.

Meeta Ramnani
Meeta Ramnani
Meeta develops credible content about various markets based on deep research, opinions from experts and inputs from industry leaders. As the managing editor at Smart Industry News, she assures that every piece of news and article adds to the knowledge of decision makers. An avid bike rider, Meeta, is a postgraduate from Indian Institute of Journalism and New Media (IIJNM) Bangalore, where her specialization was Business Journalism. She carries experience from mainstream print media including The Times Group and Sakal Media Group.