Countries that want to lift coronavirus lockdowns must meet a series of conditions to prevent another surge of infections, World Health Organization (WHO) chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said.
“First, that transmission is controlled; Second, that health system capacities are in place to detect, test, isolate and treat every case and trace every contact; Third, that outbreak risks are minimized in special settings like health facilities and nursing homes,” Tedros said.
“Fourth, those preventive measures are in place in workplaces, schools and other places where it’s essential for people to go; Fifth, that importation risks can be managed; And sixth, that communities are fully educated, engaged and empowered to adjust to the ‘new norm’,” he added.
“Almost 2 million cases of COVID-19 have now been reported to WHO from around the world, and more than 123,000 deaths. That’s more than 40,000 more deaths since I spoke to you last week. This is an alarming and tragic increase,” Tedros said in his weekly address to Geneva-based diplomats.
Tedros also stressed that the COVID-19 magnifies world’s existing health inequalities.
“Governments must consider that for some countries and communities, stay-at-home orders may not be practical, and may even cause unintended harm.”