Three things the world needs to do to beat the coronavirus pandemic, according to the WHO

Jimmy Nsubuga
·2-min read
An health worker dresses in a protective suit at the intensive care unit of San Filippo Neri Hospital in Rome on April 8, 2020,  during the Coronavirus emergency. Italy is continuing to take measures to contain the widespread of the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus which causes the Covid-19 disease. (Photo by Christian Minelli/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
Health workers dress in protective suits at San Filippo Neri Hospital in Rome. (Getty)

The World Health Organization (WHO) has identified three things international governments need to do to beat the coronavirus pandemic.

The disease has infected 1.4 million people worldwide, with 83,000 dying and 307,000 recovering, according to John Hopkins University.

Dr Hans Kluge, WHO regional director for Europe, identified three areas governments should focus on.

These were maintaining the strength of health workers; “cutting the engine of the pandemic at its course” through contact tracing, testing and isolation measures; and maintaining “solidarity” to ensure communities “leave no one behind”.

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CHELMSFORD, MA - APRIL 7: Members of the Massachusetts National Guard put on hazmat suits as they are deployed to the Palm Center nursing home facility to aide in testing at the facility in Chelmsford, MA on Apr. 7, 2020. (Photo by Jonathan Wiggs/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)
Members of the Massachusetts National Guard put on hazmat suits as they are deployed. (Getty)

Dr Kluge said: “To think we are coming close to an endpoint is a dangerous thing to do. The virus leaves no room for complacency.

“Relaxing lockdown measures requires careful consideration.”

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He added: “Now is not the time to relax measures.

“It is, once again, the time to double or triple collective efforts with the support of society.”

Dr Kluge said a dramatic rise in cases in the US skews what remains a very concerning picture in Europe, adding: “We still have a long way to go in the marathon.”

WHO spokesman Christian Lindmeier said on Tuesday it was important countries did not ease restrictions too soon.

“One of the most important parts is not to let go of the measures too early in order not to have a fall back again,” he said.

“It’s similar to being sick yourself – if you get out of bed too early and get running too early you risk falling back and having complications.”

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Meanwhile, WHO officials on Wednesday denied the body was “China-centric” and said the acute phase of a pandemic was not the time to cut funding, after US president Donald Trump said he would put contributions on hold.

The US is the top donor to the Geneva-based body, which Trump said had issued bad advice during the new coronavirus outbreak.

US contributions to WHO in 2019 exceeded $400m (£323m), almost double the 2nd largest member state contribution. China, in contrast, contributed $44m.

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