WHO urges worst-hit countries to take control of virus outbreak

GENEVA: The World Health Organisation (WHO) has urged COVID-19 affected countries to wake up to the realities on the ground instead of bickering, and to take control.
“People need to wake up. The data is not lying. The situation on the ground is not lying,” WHO emergencies director Michael Ryan said. The Americas are the hardest-hit region, with most cases and deaths registered in the United States, and with numbers skyrocketing in several countries in Latin America.
Asked about the dire situations in nations like Brazil and Mexico, which have been moving away from lockdowns despite ballooning numbers of infections and deaths, Ryan warned, “Too many countries are ignoring what the data is telling them”.
“There are good economic reasons that the countries need to bring their economies back online,” he said. “It’s understandable, but you cannot ignore the problem either. The problem will not magically go away,” he added.

Read more: Global coronavirus cases rise to more than 11 million

He insisted, “It is never too late in an epidemic to take control”. Instead of placing an entire nation under lockdown, he suggested that countries could try to break down the problem.
However, in areas where the virus is spreading uncontrollably, strict measures could be unavoidable, he said. “If countries proceed with opening up without the capacity to cope with the likely caseload, then you end up in a worst-case scenario,” Ryan cautioned. 
Global coronavirus cases exceeded 11 million, marking another grim milestone in the spread of the disease that has killed more than half a million people in seven months.
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