The World Health Organization has declared the coronavirus (COVID-19) a global pandemic on Wednesday as the total number of infections rises to over 121,000.
WHO officials have been reluctant to declare the outbreak as a global pandemic due to its political and economic ramifications. Analysts have criticized the body’s slow reaction to the health crisis citing them to be “behind the curve”.
The last time WHO declared a pandemic was during the 2009 H1N1 flu outbreak. Cases of the virus outbreak have now surpassed 121,000 with at least 4,373 deaths confirmed across the world.
Italy has the most cases outside China with roughly 10,149 infections, followed closely by Iran with 9,000 infections and South Korea with 7,775.
WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom noted that cases outside China have increase thirteenfold in the past two weeks and expect the numbers to go even higher in the coming weeks.
In the past two weeks the number of cases outside China has increased thirteenfold and the number of affected countries has tripled
In the days and weeks ahead, we expect to see the number of cases, the number of deaths and the number of affected countries to climb even higherDr Tedros Adhanom
He also noted that several countries have demonstrated the ability to suppress and control the outbreak but criticized other world leaders for failing to act quickly.
We can not say this loudly enough or clearly enough or often enough: All countries can still change the course of this pandemic
Some countries are struggling with a lack of capacity. Some countries are struggling with a lack of resources. Some countries are struggling with a lack of resolve
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