Marking one of the most tragic days in the global health history, the World Health Organization (WHO) on Thursday declared coronavirus outbreak as a global health emergency. Bringing the total death toll to 213, with almost 10,000 cases confirmed worldwide, WHO called for an emergency meeting to discuss upon the dreadful virus which has spread its roots in more than 18 countries including India.
Addressing the nations, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the WHO chief announced the health emergency and their greatest concern is the potential for the virus to spread to countries with weaker health systems. “The main reason for this declaration is not because of what is happening in China, but because of what is happening in other countries,” he added.
WHO on Friday has sent prompt orders to governments to upgrade their own response to the virus. The declaration ought to improve the international co-ordination in tackling the disease. Addressing the same, China President Xi Jinping said – “We must all act together now to limit further spread. We can only stop it together.” On the hand, many countries have issue fourth level warnings urging their citizens not to visit China, while some have banned entry for travellers from Wuhan and Russia said it was closing its far eastern border with China over the outbreak. WHO previously declared five global public health emergencies during the Swine flu, Polio, Zika and Ebola outbreaks.