From Our Bureau               

26TH JULY 2020    

The Corona Virus (COVID-19) pandemic situation remained grim globally, with the confirmed cases across the world soaring to 1,57,85,641 and the death toll rising to  6,40,016 in the 216 affected countries and territories, according to the latest update from the World Health Organization (WHO).

Globally, American region continued to be the worst-hit with 83,85,810 confirmed cases and 3,32,589 deaths. Europe came next with 32,16,335 confirmed cases and 2,10,261 deaths. South-East Asia region’s tally stood at 17,32,248 confirmed cases and 39,786 deaths.

Eastern Mediterranean region reported 14,69,979 confirmed cases and 37,482 deaths. African region registered 6,96,207 confirmed cases and 11,708 deaths. Western Pacific region recorded 2,84,321 confirmed cases and 8,177 deaths. WHO Risk Assessment at global level remained very high.

WHO has published an interim guidance on safe Eid al Adha practices in the context of COVID-19. The document highlights public health advice for social gatherings and religious practices that can be applied across different national contexts.

In Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Monks and health officials are working together to keep communities safe from COVID-19. The Ministry of Health, Lao Front for National Development and the Central Buddhist Fellowship, with technical support from the WHO Regional Office for the Western Pacific and financial support from the United States via USAID, organized a two-day engagement event to discuss community level action to prevent COVID-19 and combat the fear, stigma and discrimination outbreaks can bring.

WHO has published a draft landscape of COVID-19 candidate vaccines. As of 24th July, twenty-five candidate vaccines are under clinical evaluation.

On 23 July, the WHO Regional Office for Africa warned of the threat posed by COVID-19 to health workers across Africa. More than 10,000 health workers in the 40 countries are reported to be infected with COVID-19, a sign of the challenges medical staff on the frontlines of the outbreak face. (eom)

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