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WHO chief hopes coronavirus pandemic lasts less than two years


File Photo: World Health Organization (WHO) Executive Director Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus will speak at a press conference on 30 January 2020 in Geneva, Switzerland. Reuters / Denis Balibouse / File Photo

GENEVA (Reuters)-The World Health Organization wants coronavirus pandemics to last less than two years, shorter than the 1918 Spanish flu, said WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Gebreezas If they succeed in finding a match,

WHO has always been cautious in estimating how quickly a pandemic can be dealt with if the vaccine is unproven.

Tedros said the 1918 Spanish flu “has taken two years to stop.”

“And in our situation, more technology and, of course, greater connectivity have made it more likely that a virus could spread. Now it’s easier to connect and viruses can move faster. You can do it,” said the briefing in Geneva.

“But at the same time, we have the technology to stop it, and the knowledge to stop it. So, while it has the drawbacks of globalization, intimacy, and connectivity, it has the benefits of better technology.

“I mean, I hope to finish this pandemic (within two years).”

He called for “national unity” and “global solidarity.”

“It’s really important in getting the most out of the tools available and expecting to get additional tools like vaccines.”

More than 21.28 million people have been infected with the coronavirus since it was first confirmed in China last year, according to Reuters tally, with 793,382 deaths.

Report by Stephanie Nebehai, Michael Shields and Joe Mason. Written by Nick Macfie. Edited by Hugh Lawson


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