Is the covid epidemic at an end? This subject will be discussed at the World Health Organization’s (WHO) fourteenth meeting after the UN agency first identified the coronavirus outbreak in January 2020.
As per The Quartz, on Friday (January 27), the WHO’s International Health Regulations (2005) Emergency Committee will discuss whether the covid outbreak still qualifies as a public health emergency of international concern (PHEIC), the agency’s highest level of risk.
Although the ultimate decision rests with WHO director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, he has followed the committee’s recommendations throughout the pandemic.
Tedros remarked at a press briefing prior to the meeting, the first since China relaxed its zero-covid policy, “While I will not preempt the advice of the emergency committee, I remain very worried by the situation in many countries and the escalating number of deaths.” In the last eight weeks, at least 170,000 covid deaths have been reported in China.
The committee will assess if the epidemic is still “serious, sudden, unusual, or unexpected.” In spite of the fact that the pandemic is still grave, fast antigen tests, antiviral therapies like as the Paxlovid tablet, and vaccines have made considerable strides in protecting people against the virus over the past three years.
More than two-thirds of the global population has gotten at least one dose of covid vaccination to date. The committee’s verdict is anticipated to be announced on January 30.