THE WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION (WHO) has declared the coronavirus spread in 118 countries a pandemic. In WHO terms, a pandemic is a worldwide spread of a new disease. And the global health agency is not expecting the current 100,000 plus cases with COVID-19 infection to whittle down in the next few weeks.

The global health agency expects more countries to report infestations of more people in their respective territories. As of date, more than 3,000 had died due to the virus.

” Find, isolate and test every case, every contact. Ready your hospitals. Train your health workers,” says WHO director-general Tedros Adhanon Gnabreyesus after declaring the unusual spread of the new strain of the coronavirus.

The WHO says this is the first involving a coronavirus has been declared a pandemic.

While morbidity rates has slowed down in China and South Korea–two of the most affected countries in 118 countries–this however does not mean that others in other countries will see the same pattern. Mitigating the spread and effects of this coronavirus requires a whole of nation approach, says WHO.

There is hope though. The WHO describes this pandemic as something which is not impossible to control. ” The bottom line is–we are not at the mercy of this virus,” The WHO head declares.

A pneumonia of unknown cause detected in Wuhan, China was first reported to the WHO Country Office in China on 31 December 2019.

• WHO is working 24/7 to analyse data, provide advice, coordinate with partners, help countries prepare, increase supplies and manage expert networks.

• The outbreak was declared a Public Health Emergency of International Concern on 30 January 2020.

• The international community has asked for US$675 million to help protect states with weaker health systems as part of its Strategic Preparedness and Response Plan.

• On 11 February 2020, WHO announced a name for the new coronavirus disease: COVID-19.


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