The Director-general of the World Health Organization (WHO) Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus says the coronavirus pandemic is going to get “worse and worse” if certain governments do not take decisive action to curb the spread of the disease.
Dr. Tedros made this statement during a briefing in Geneva.
He explained that measures such as social distancing, hand washing, and wearing masks inappropriate situations needed to be taken seriously, warning that there would be “no return to the old normal for the foreseeable future”.
“dangerous increases in cases” in countries where “proven measures to reduce risk are not implemented or followed”.
“Let me blunt, too many countries are headed in the wrong direction.”
“The virus remains public enemy number one, but the actions of many governments and people do not reflect this”
“Mixed messages from leaders” were undermining public trust in attempts to bring the pandemic under control”
“If the basics aren’t followed, there is only one way this pandemic is going to go, It’s going to get worse and worse and worse.” Dr Tedros said
While Dr Tedors did not mention those leaders by name, some may interpret his pointed remarks as a warning to US President Donald Trump and others who have been widely criticised for their handling of the pandemic.
Dr Mike Ryan, the WHO’s emergencies director, said the easing of some lockdown measures in the Americas and the opening up of some areas had led to “intense transmission”.
Latin America has confirmed more than 145,000 coronavirus-related deaths, though the number is believed to be higher because of insufficient testing.
Half of the deaths were in Brazil, where President Jair Bolsonaro has opposed strict measures to curb the spread of the virus.
Dr Ryan said closing down large regions would have huge economic consequences, but that local lockdowns in specific places might be necessary to mitigate the spread of the virus.
He urged governments to implement clear and “strong” strategies, adding: “Citizens have to understand, and it has to be easy for them to comply.”
By: Naa Ayorkor Laryea