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World Health Organisation warns about dangers of premature lifting of Covid-19 restrictions

(WHO) warned countries on Friday to be cautious about lifting restrictions introduced to curb the spread of the new covid-19 and voiced alarm it was taking hold in Africa.

The United Nations would like to see an easing but at the same time lifting restrictions could lead to a deadly resurgence. WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told a press conference.

Adhanom said there had been a welcome slowing of epidemics in some European countries like Italy, Germany, Spain and France but there had been an alarming acceleration elsewhere including community transmission in sixteen countries of Africa.

Nearly 15 lac confirmed cases of Covid-19 and 92,000+ deaths have been reported to the Geneva-based agency Tedros said.

Yemen reported its first case of the novel covid-19 on Friday as aid groups braced for an outbreak in a country where war has shattered health systems and spread hunger and disease

He said he was particularly concerned by the large number of infections reported among health workers.

In some countries reports of up to 10 per cent of health workers being infected, this is an alarming trend, Tedros said.

New UN supply task force will coordinate and scale up the procurement and distribution of protective gear, lab diagnostics and oxygen to the countries that need it most.

Every month we will need to ship at least 100 million masks and gloves. Up to 25 million N-95 respirators, gowns and face shields, up to 25 lac diagnostic tests and large quantities of oxygen concentrates and other equipment for clinical care Tedros said.

The World Food Program (WFP) UN agency that handles logistics will deploy eight 747 aircraft 8 medium size cargo aircraft and some smaller passenger planes to transport goods and aid workers needed in the operation which will have 8 hubs, Tedros said.

Tedros urged donors to contribute to WFP’s operation which will cost an estimated $280 million while the cost of procuring supplies will be much greater

Michael Ryan executive director of the WHO Health Emergencies Programmer said the world owed a tremendous debt to front line health workers and it was vital they got the right protective gear

He said no country was immune from the pandemic which was spreading panic around the world, cases have recently been found in some parts of Japan with no known links to other outbreaks.

From this universal we have to try to learn, what the gaps are. This is a message even for the developed countries, across the board you see a lack of preparedness of the public health system, He said.

No country is immune, no country can claim it has a strong health system we have to be really honest and assess and address this problem

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