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‘Harmful to imagine’ we’re in COVID-19 pandemic endgame, WHO head warns – Nationwide

The top of the World Well being Group is warning that situations stay supreme for extra coronavirus variants to emerge and says it’s harmful to imagine Omicron is the final one or that “we’re within the endgame,” whereas saying the acute section of the pandemic may nonetheless finish this yr – if some key targets are met.

Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO’s director-general, laid out Monday an array of achievements and considerations in international well being over points like lowering tobacco use, combating resistance to anti-microbial remedies, and dangers of local weather change on human well being. However he stated “ending the acute section of the pandemic should stay our collective precedence.”

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Omicron peaking in some international locations, however nobody is ‘out of the woods but’: WHO

“There are totally different situations for the way the pandemic may play out and the way the acute section may finish. But it surely’s harmful to imagine that Omicron would be the final variant or that we’re within the endgame,” Tedros advised the beginning of a WHO government board assembly this week. “Quite the opposite, globally, the situations are perfect for extra variants to emerge.”

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However he insisted that “we are able to finish COVID-19 as a worldwide well being emergency, and we are able to do it this yr,” by reaching objectives like WHO’s goal to vaccinate 70 % of the inhabitants of every nation by the center of this yr, with a give attention to people who find themselves on the highest danger of COVID-19, and bettering testing and sequencing charges to trace the virus and its rising variants extra intently.

Click to play video: 'WHO says Omicron COVID-19 variant less severe than Delta but still poses danger for unvaccinated'

WHO says Omicron COVID-19 variant much less extreme than Delta however nonetheless poses hazard for unvaccinated

WHO says Omicron COVID-19 variant much less extreme than Delta however nonetheless poses hazard for unvaccinated – Jan 12, 2022

“It’s true that we are going to be dwelling with COVID for the foreseeable future and that we might want to be taught to handle it by a sustained and built-in system for acute respiratory ailments” to assist put together for future pandemics, he stated. “However studying to dwell with COVID can’t imply that we give this virus a free trip. It can’t imply that we settle for nearly 50,000 deaths per week from a preventable and treatable illness.”

In stark phrases, Tedros additionally appealed for strengthening WHO and rising funding for it to assist stave off well being crises.

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“Let me put it plainly: If the present funding mannequin continues, WHOis being set as much as fail. The paradigm shift in world well being that’s wanted now have to be matched by a paradigm shift in funding the world’s well being group.”

© 2022 The Canadian Press

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