WHO Says ‘Way Too Early’ To Predict End Of Novel Coronavirus

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Medical workers in protective suits help transfer the first group of coronavirus patients into the newly completed Huoshenshan temporary field hospital in Wuhan, China. (Photograph: AP)

GENEVA – The UN health agen­cy on Wednesday cautioned it was “way too early” to say whether COVID-19 might have peaked or when it might end, following a drop in new cases.

“I think it’s way too early to try to predict the beginning, the middle or the end of this epidemic right now,” Michael Ryan, head of WHO’s health emergencies programme, told reporters.

WHO chief Tedros Adha­nom Ghebreyesus said: “The number of newly reported cases from China has stabilised in the past week but that has to be in­terpreted with extreme caution.

“This outbreak could go in any direction,” he added.

Tedros also praised Cam­bodia for agreeing to take in the Westerdam, a US cruise ship that has been rejected at several Asian ports over coro­navirus fears.

“This is an example of the international solidarity we have consistently been calling for,” he said.

“Outbreaks can bring out the best and worst in people. Stigmatising individuals or entire nations does nothing but harm the response.

“Instead of directing all our energy against the out­break, stigma diverts our attention and turns people against each other,” he added. (AFP)

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