COVID-19 in the world: WHO warns of a new stage of acceleration of the pandemic

The director general of the World Health Organization (WHO), Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, warned that COVID-19 has experienced a new acceleration in its spread, so that countries should not neglect the containment measures implemented, TeleSur reports.

During a press conference of the agency, the official expressed that "the world is in a new and dangerous phase (...) the growth of the pandemic is still fast, it is still deadly and many people are still susceptible to becoming infected."

In addition, he reported that more than 150,000 new cases were confirmed on Thursday, being the highest number of infections in the world since the pandemic began.

Globally, there are already more than 8,600,000 confirmed cases, as well as more than 450,000 deaths. Almost half of those confirmed, in the last 24 hours, correspond to the Americas region, with significant numbers from Asia and the Middle East, according to Ghebreyesus.

"We call on all countries to exercise extreme vigilance, to maintain social distancing measures, and the rest of the sanitary measures that have been promoted by the WHO," insisted the director general of the organization.

Likewise, he stressed the importance of international cooperation. "We are more vulnerable when we are divided, but with solidarity and cooperation, we will overcome the COVID-19 pandemic, and we will be better prepared for the crises of the future," he said.

Attention to refugees

The conference, which was attended by other WHO authorities and the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, Filippo Grandi, also discussed the issue of people in situations of forced displacement, on the eve of the world day dedicated to the same.

Ghebreyesus recalled that, this Saturday, World Refugee Day will be commemorated, calling it a propitious moment to highlight the effects of the pandemic on one of the sectors of the population most sensitive to Covid-19

In this regard, he called for governments with a presence of refugees in their territories to serve these people as one of the most vulnerable groups in the face of the new coronavirus.

"Refugees are particularly at risk, because they usually have limited access to water, food, sanitation, health care and adequate dwellings," said Tedros.

"Over 80 percent of the world's refugees, and almost all the internally displaced, reside in low- or middle-income countries. WHO is deeply concerned about the very real and present risk of rapid spread of COVID-19 in the refugee camps, "he added.