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Pandemic Won’t Be Over Until 70 Per Cent Are Vaccinated: WHO

“Don’t think the COVID-19 pandemic is over,” WHO’s regional director for Europe stated (File)

Copenhagen:

The WHO’s European director warned Friday that the Covid-19 pandemic will not finish till no less than 70 p.c of persons are vaccinated, and criticized Europe’s vaccine rollout as “too slow”.

The World Health Organization’s regional director for Europe Hans Kluge stated nations and their populations should not turn out to be complacent concerning the pandemic.

“Don’t think the COVID-19 pandemic is over,” Kluge advised AFP in an interview, whereas including that vaccination charges wanted to extend.

“The pandemic will be over once we reach 70 percent minimum coverage in vaccination,” the regional director stated.

In the 53 nations and territories that make up the WHO’s European area — together with a number of in Central Asia — 26 p.c of the inhabitants has acquired a primary dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.

In the European Union, 36.6 p.c of the inhabitants has acquired no less than one dose and 16.9 p.c have been absolutely vaccinated, in accordance with a rely by AFP.

Kluge stated one among his predominant issues was the elevated contagiousness of recent variants.

“We know for example that the B.1617 (India-dominant variant) is more transmissible than the B.117 (British variant), which already was more transmissible than the previous strain,” Kluge famous.

Cases of the India-dominant variant have been recorded in 27 of the area’s 53 nations , whereas the variety of new circumstances, and deaths, has fallen for 5 consecutive weeks, reaching their lowest ranges since mid-October.

Speed important

Worldwide, new circumstances have dropped for 4 weeks in a row, in accordance with an AFP tally.

But whereas vaccines have confirmed efficient in opposition to coronavirus mutations, folks should nonetheless be vigilant, Kluge emphasised.

The Belgian physician stated a serious concern was that “people drop their guards that they become complacent,” particularly going into the summer time months.

In addition, giant gatherings are on the horizon together with the European soccer championship.

“Let’s finally give COVID-19 the red card, don’t allow extra time for Covid-19,” Kluge quipped, repeating recommendation to take care of social distances and put on face masks.

He additionally underscored that pace is “of essence” in the course of the pandemic. 

“Our best friend is speed, time is working against us, (and) the vaccination roll-out still goes too slow,” Kluge stated.

“We need to accelerate, we need to enlarge the number of vaccines,” and European nations wanted to indicate extra solidarity.

“It is not acceptable that some countries start to vaccinate the younger, healthy part of the population, while other countries in our region still did not cover all the health care workers and the most vulnerable people,” Kluge stated.


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