By Tamsin Brown • 20 January 2022 • 14:40
An expert from the WHO has said that if COVID becomes endemic, this is not necessarily a good thing, nor does it mean the light at the end of the tunnel – it simply means that it will be “here forever”.
Lately, there has been a lot of talk about how the coronavirus pandemic will inevitably turn into an endemic. However, this does not mean that we can let our guard down, according to the World Health Organisation.
The transformation of the pandemic into an endemic is not necessarily good news, stated an official from the WHO, who said that the objective is “that no-one has to die” from COVID-19.
“Endemic malaria, endemic HIV kill hundreds of thousands of people every year — endemic does not mean ‘good,’ it just means ‘here forever’,” he said. “What we need to do is get to low levels of disease incidence with maximum vaccination of our populations where no one has to die. That’s the end of the emergency in my view, that’s the end of the pandemic, said the director of the WHO Health Emergencies Programme, Mike Ryan. He was speaking at a talk with other experts from the pharmaceutical sector and civil society at a virtual event organised by the World Economic Forum.
Ryan, who is leading the WHO team fighting to put an end to the pandemic, insisted that the world cannot get rid of the virus, which “will become part of the ecosystem”, but what we can do is overcome the international health crisis caused by it.
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Originally from London, Tamsin is based in Malaga and is a local reporter for the Euro Weekly News covering Spanish and international news.
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