WHO chief says end of COVID pandemic 'is in sight'

WHO chief says end of COVID pandemic ‘is in sight’

WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said on Wednesday that the end of the pandemic “is in sight”, but warned that “we are not there yet”.

Driving the news: “We have never been in a better position to end the pandemic,” Tedros said, noting that the death toll from COVID-19 last week was the lowest since March 2020.

  • “If we don’t seize this opportunity now, we run the risk of more variants, more deaths, more disruption and more uncertainty, so let’s seize this opportunity,” Tedros added.

The big picture: The WHO director-general’s remarks are the most optimistic since the UN agency declared the coronavirus outbreak a pandemic in March 2020, Reuters notes.

  • Tedros urged governments to “carefully review” their policies and “strengthen them for COVID-19 and future pathogens with pandemic potential.”
  • “We urge all countries to invest in vaccinating 100% of the most-at-risk groups, including health workers and the elderly,” he said and called on countries to “continue testing and to sequence” the COVID-19 virus.

State of play: COVID has killed an estimated 6.5 million people and infected more than 609 million, according to Johns Hopkins University’s online tracker.

Go further… Axios-Ipsos poll: Roll out the credits on the pandemic

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