World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said that he will reconvene the Emergency Committee on Thursday to re-evaluate the coronavirus pandemic, as the global COVID-19 cases doubled over the last six weeks.
Thursday will mark six months since January 30 when the WHO declared the coronavirus outbreak a public health emergency of international concern, reports Xinhua news agency.
Addressing a virtual press conference, Tedros said that since then, 16 million cases have now been reported to WHO, with more than 640,000 deaths worldwide.
“This is the sixth time a global health emergency has been declared under the International Health Regulations, but it is easily the most severe,” he said, adding that the pandemic continues to accelerate.
In the past six weeks, the global total number of cases has roughly doubled, Tedros said.
He said that although the world has changed, the basic measures needed to suppress transmission and save lives have not — find, isolate, test and care for cases, and trace and quarantine their contacts.
“Countries and communities that have followed this advice carefully and consistently have done well, either in preventing large-scale outbreaks — like Cambodia, New Zealand, Rwanda, Thailand, Vietnam, and islands in the Pacific and Caribbean — or in bringing large outbreaks under control, like Canada, China, Germany and the Republic of Korea,” he said.
According to the Johns Hopkins University, the overall number of global coronavirus cases stood at 16,407,310 as of Tuesday morning, while the deaths have increased to 652,459.
The US accounted for the world’s highest number of infections and fatalities at 4,287,974 and 148,009, respectively.
Brazil came in the second place with 2,442,375 infections and 87,618 deaths.