World Health Organization ends COVID-19 global health emergency

The head of the World Health Organization has declared an end to the global COVID-19 health emergency, but Doctor Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus stressed that doesn’t mean the virus is no longer a concern.

The Director General noted COVID-19 claimed a life somewhere around the world every three minutes.

Despite that statistic, the WHO’s COVID-19 Emergency Committee met for the 15th time on Thursday and recommended ending the global emergency, and Adhanom Ghebreyesus agreed.

He made the announcement official on Friday morning.

He also urged countries not to let the lessons of COVID-19 go to waste.

“This is a moment for reflection,” he said in his remarks which were later posted on Twitter. “COVID-19 has left, and continues to leave, deep scars on our world. Those scars must serve as a permanent reminder of the potential for new viruses to emerge with devastating consequences.”

He urged countries to remain vigilant against the virus.

“We have the tools and the technologies to prepare for pandemics better, to detect them earlier, to respond to them faster, and mitigate their impact,” said Adhanom Ghebreyesus. “But globally, a lack of coordination, a lack of equity and a lack of solidarity meant that those tools were not used as effectively as they could have been. Lives were lost that should not have been.”

The global health emergency was declared 1,122 days ago.

More to come.

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