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WHO DG urges to go after COVID-19 virus, not the vulnerable

GENEVA: As the countries continue to register news cases of coronavirus every day, World Health Organisation (WHO) Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus has urged the leaders to maintain peace and focus on combatting against the virus and "not the vulnerable".

"It's a pandemic: go after the virus, not the vulnerable," said Ghebreyesus on Twitter.

In another tweet, he said, "Shanti" (peace). Interestingly, the WHO Director-General tweeted in Hindi.

Earlier, in a video message, the Director-General urged the countries to opt for "case finding, isolation, testing, compassionate care, contact tracing, quarantine, physical distancing, hand hygiene, masks, respiratory etiquette, ventilation, avoiding crowds and more" instead of herd immunity.

Informing about the herd immunity, he said, "There has been some discussion recently about the concept of reaching so-called "herd immunity" by letting the virus spread. Herd immunity is a concept used for vaccination, in which a population can be protected from a certain virus if a threshold of vaccination is reached. For example, herd immunity against measles requires about 95 per cent of a population to be vaccinated. The remaining 5 per cent will be protected by the fact that measles will not spread among those who are vaccinated. In other words, herd immunity is achieved by protecting people from a virus, not exposing them to it."

He further said, "Allowing a dangerous virus that we don't fully understand to run free is simply unethical. It's not an option. But we do have many options. WHO recommends case finding, isolation, testing, compassionate care, contact tracing, quarantine, physical distancing, hand hygiene, masks, respiratory etiquette, ventilation, avoiding crowds and more. This is what countries are proving works, every day."

According to the latest update by the Johns Hopkins University, 38,441,934 people globally have till now tested positive for coronavirus and 1,091,439 people have died.

 

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