Family members in Personal Protection Equipment (PSA) kits, along with other relatives, bury a person who has died of Covid-19 at the Jadid Qabristan Ahle – Islam cemetery near ITO in New Delhi on September 12, 2020.
Mayank Makhija | NurPhoto | Getty Images
The World Health Organization warned Friday that Coronavirus “doesn’t go away” and notes that it still kills about 50,000 people a week.
“We don’t want to be here,” said Mike Ryan, executive director of the WHO emergency program, during a press conference at the agency’s Geneva headquarters on the Covid-19 deaths. “It’s not where the northern hemisphere wants to go into the winter season. It’s not where developing countries want to be under nine months of pressure with their healthcare.
Ryan said the virus still had a “long way to burn”. WHO officials said they are starting to see “worrying trends” in the number of Covid-19 cases, ICU admissions and hospital admissions in the northern hemisphere as the colder seasons begin.
“It hasn’t burned out, it doesn’t burn out, it doesn’t go away,” said Ryan, “and especially for those countries entering their winter season because people are coming together more indoors. There’s a lot to do.” To avoid intensification events, reduce the transmission of this epidemic, protect the opening of schools, and protect the most vulnerable people in our society from serious illness and death. “
European health authorities have been warning for weeks about an increasing number of Covid-19 cases. More than half of European countries have reported increases in cases of 10% or more in the past two weeks, and of seven newly reported cases have more than doubled, WHO Regional Director for Europe Hans Kluge said Thursday in a press conference.
In the United States, health officials are reporting around 39,000 new Covid-19 cases a day, according to Johns Hopkins University. Covid-19 cases grew 5% or more based on a weekly average to smooth daily coverage in at least 34 states as well as Washington DC as of Friday. That came out from a CNBC analysis of the Hopkins data, up from eight states at the same time last week.
U.S. health officials fear the outbreak could worsen as the nation enters the fall and winter seasons. Health officials have repeatedly warned that they are preparing to tackle two nasty viruses that will circulate later this year as the Covid-19 outbreak enters flu season. Earlier this month, Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s leading expert on infectious diseases, said the number of new cases in the United States every day shortly before the fall was “unacceptably high”.
Dr. Maria Van Kerkhove, WHO technical director on the Covid-19 pandemic, noted on Friday that health officials around the world have conducted “literally hundreds” of seroepidemiological studies examining the extent of coronavirus infection in different populations. The studies show that “much of the world’s population is susceptible to infection from this virus,” she said.
“That means the virus still has a long way to go,” said Kerkhove.
Kerkhove said it was “absolutely critical” for countries to have a strong plan for when the outbreak occurs.
“What is really important right now is that countries respond in their response by breaking down the problem and breaking the outbreak down to the lowest level of government as much as possible,” she said. “It’s not just about case numbers. These are incredibly important and we need to be able to follow these trends, but we also need to look at hospital stays, ICU occupancy and the number of people entering the ICU. “