Politicisation of Covid-19 response seen as major detriment to global efforts: WHO

Prashasti Awasthi Mumbai | Updated on October 31, 2020

Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of the WHO   -  REUTERS

The global reported cases of the novel coronavirus had reached 44 million

The Emergency Committee on coronavirus, formed by the World Health Organization (WHO), convened a meeting on October 29 to review the situation and progress made on the temporary recommendations.

The committee concluded that the ongoing pandemic still constituted a public health emergency of international concern. It further urged a focus on response efforts based on lessons learned and strong science.

Accepting the committee’s advice, WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus stated in a statement, “WHO will continue to work in partnership across the world to drive science, solutions, and solidarity.”

The committee further expressed appreciation for WHO’s leadership and activities throughout the global response. This included its critical role in developing evidence-based guidance, providing countries with technical assistance and critical supplies and equipment, communicating clear information and addressing misinformation, and convening the Solidarity Trials and the Access to Covid-19 Tools (ACT) Accelerator.

The committee also provided targeted advice for WHO and countries to focus on in the coming months.

It emphasised the importance of evidence-informed, risk-based and coherent measures in relation to international traffic, surveillance and contract tracing efforts, maintaining essential health services including mental health services, and preparing plans for future Covid-19 vaccines.

The committee asked countries to avoid politicisation of the pandemic response, seen as a major detriment to global efforts.

The convention was the fifth since the inception of the pandemic.

Meanwhile, the global reported cases of the novel coronavirus had reached 44 million, with over 1.1 million people have lost their lives to Covid-19.

Published on October 31, 2020

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