The end of the maximum alert for the Coronavirus? WHO Committee to rule on severity of pandemic, ‘don’t underestimate this virus’

Rewrite this content

For the head of the World Health Organization, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the answer does not seem to be in doubt.

“Although I do not want to preempt the opinion of the emergency committee, I remain very concerned about the situation in many countries and the growing number of deaths,” he said on Tuesday, during a regular press briefing. in Geneva.

“My message is clear: “Do not underestimate this virus, it has surprised us and will continue to surprise us and it will continue to kill, unless we do more to provide the means of sanitation to the people who need it and to fight against disinformation on a global scale”, had insisted the director general, who can choose to follow or not the opinion of the Emergency Committee.

The 14th meeting of this Committee takes place almost three years to the day since it first recommended declaring Covid-19, a public health emergency of international concern, the highest level of alert in the world. WHO.

Since then, this panel of experts meets every three months to discuss the pandemic and then reports to Dr. Tedros, in the form of recommendations.

The latter also underlined on Tuesday that “although we are clearly in a better position than three years ago, when this pandemic first hit, the global collective response is again under severe strain.”

The disease has claimed 170,000 lives in the past two months, particularly in China, the very place where the disease was first detected in late 2019.

Dr Tedros regretted that too few people are being properly vaccinated and that surveillance and genetic sequencing, which track the evolution of the virus and its movements, have dropped sharply.

This renders epidemiologists and epidemic control officials more or less blind.

The emergency committee meeting is being held in a hybrid format, with some participants in Geneva and others joining online.

The Committee is chaired by the French doctor Didier Houssin and has 17 other members as well as 11 advisers.

The meeting is due to last Friday afternoon and the outcome of the deliberations should be published in the coming days.

The Committee had declared the Covid 19 epidemic a USPPI (Public Health Emergency of International Concern) on January 30, 2020, while outside China, less than 100 cases and no deaths had yet been recorded.

The alert and its somewhat convoluted name failed to convince authorities and the general public of the urgency of the situation.

It had to wait until March 11 and the use of the word “pandemic” by the head of the WHO to get things moving.

and and more content about The end of the maximum alert for the Coronavirus? WHO Committee to rule on severity of pandemic, ‘don’t underestimate this virus’