From Our Bureau    

31st MAY 2020

The Corona Virus (CPVID-19) pandemic situation remained grim globally, with the confirmed cases across the world soaring to 59,34,936 and the death toll reaching 3,67,166 in the 216 affected countries and territories, according to the latest update from the World Health Organization (WHO).

Globally, European region continued to be the worst-hit in terms of fatalities with 21,42,547 confirmed cases and 1,80,085 deaths. American region came next with 27,43,793 confirmed cases and 1,57,702 deaths. Eastern Mediterranean region reported 5,05,001 confirmed cases and 12,353 deaths.

Western Pacific region’s tally stood at 1,81,665 confirmed cases and 7,028 deaths. South-East Asia region recorded 2,60,579 confirmed cases and 7,431 deaths and African region witnessed 1,00,610 confirmed cases and 2,554 deaths. WHO Risk Assessment at global level remained very high.

Today, WHO celebrates World No Tobacco Day. Smoking kills 8 million people worldwide each year and is associated with increased severity of disease and death in hospitalized COVID-19 patients.

People living with non-communicable diseases (NCDs) are more vulnerable to becoming severely ill or dying from COVID-19. The pandemic has also caused NCD service disruption according to preliminary results of a rapid assessment, and WHO encourages governments to ‘build back better.’

The President of Costa Rica and WHO Director-General Dr Tedros launched the COVID-19 Technology Access Pool, a policy initiative aimed at making vaccines, tests, treatments and other health technologies to fight COVID-19 accessible to all. The initiative has five priority areas.

Dr Hans Henri P. Kluge, WHO Regional Director for Europe, has released a statement analysing the COVID-19 pandemic in Europe and emphasizing that recovery must lead to a different economy, an economy of well-being.

The WHO Regional Office for Africa has urged caution as countries ease lockdowns. WHO Regional Director Dr Moeti stressed that “Ending a lockdown is not an event, but a process…” (eom)

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