Wed 11 May 2022:
The World Health Organization said Tuesday that China’s flagship zero-Covid pandemic strategy is unsustainable, adding that it had informed Beijing of this and asked for a policy reform.
“When we talk about the zero Covid strategy, we don’t think that it’s sustainable, considering the behaviour of the virus now and what we anticipate in the future,” the WHO chief said.
China has been grappling with a virus surge in Bejing even as it battles lockdown in its financial hub Shanghai.
Tedros informed that the WHO had spoken to Chinese officials on the Covid zero strategy while stressing on “shift” in approach.
WHO emergencies director Michael Ryan had spoken about a “balance” in control measures to ensure impact on society and the economy is taken into account.
China began conducting mass testing in capital Beijing as authorities closed subway stations and offices and asked people to work remotely.
Health officials have ordered Beijing residents not to leave the city while stressing on negative virus tests to enter public places including offices and supermarkets.
Schools, gyms and entertainment centres in Beijing have also been closed down. China’s financial hub Shanghai has been hit by the Omicron wave with over 500 people reportedly dead in the new surge even as the city grapples with food shortage and several rounds of testing.
Maria Van Kerkhove, the WHO‘s technical lead on Covid-19, said that worldwide, it was impossible to stop all transmission of the virus.
“Our goal, at a global level, is not to find all cases and stop all transmissions. It’s really not possible at this present time,” she said.
“But what we need to do is drive transmission down because the virus is circulating at such an intense level.”
SOURCE: INDEPENDENT PRESS AND NEWS AGENCIES
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