WHO warns there may never be COVID -19 ‘sil­ver bul­let’

The Korea Times - - WORLD -

GENEVA (AFP) — The World Health Or­ga­ni­za­tion said Mon­day it had com­pleted the ground­work in China to probe the ori­gins of the new coro­n­avirus — as it warned there might never be a “sil­ver bul­let” for COVID-19.

WHO chief Te­dros Ad­hanom Ghe­breye­sus urged gov­ern­ments and cit­i­zens to fo­cus on known ba­sic steps to sup­press the pan­demic, such as test­ing, con­tact trac­ing, main­tain­ing phys­i­cal dis­tance and wear­ing a mask.

“We all hope to have a num­ber of ef­fec­tive vac­cines that can help pre­vent peo­ple from in­fec­tion,” Te­dros told a vir­tual press con­fer­ence.

“How­ever, there’s no sil­ver bul­let at the mo­ment — and there might never be.

“The ba­sics of pub­lic health” are most ef­fec­tive for now, Te­dros added, say­ing that wear­ing a mask in par­tic­u­lar was send­ing a “pow­er­ful mes­sage to those around you that we are all in this to­gether.”

In­fec­tions are surg­ing in some coun­tries around the world, but Te­dros in­sisted that how­ever bad the sit­u­a­tion was, past ex­am­ples such as South Korea showed it could be turned around.

“When lead­ers step up and work in­tensely with their pop­u­la­tions, this dis­ease can be brought un­der con­trol,” he said.

The novel coro­n­avirus has killed nearly 690,000 peo­ple and in­fected at least 18.1 mil­lion since the out­break emerged in Wuhan in China last De­cem­ber, ac­cord­ing to a tally from of­fi­cial sources com­piled by AFP.

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