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1 Apr 2022

COVID-19: WHO Announces Strategy to Survive Emergency Stage of Pandemic

The Index Today

The World Health Organization (WHO) on Wednesday unveiled an enhanced strategic plan that outlines methods to counter the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, which has the potential to end the crucial phase if enforced in 2022.

According to Reuters, the plan accounts for strategies to counter three possible courses in which the virus can develop this year: the base case, best case, and the worst case.

WHO’s Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said, “Based on what we know now, the most likely scenario is that the COVID-19 virus continues to evolve, but the severity of disease it causes reduces over time as immunity increases due to vaccination and infection.”

As per the WHO’s COVID-19 outline, the virus variants would lead to less serious spikes in cases in the base case scenario, which would require booster shots to supplement fading vaccine immunity.

In the best case scenario, COVID-19’s subsequent variants would be less severe than their predecessors whose outbreak and transmissions would be seasonal, occurring mostly during the winter months much like influenza. At-risk population groups would require booster shots in such a scenario.

In the worst case scenario, however, the virus would evolve to become a more deadly and severe version of its current self which would be largely resistant to present vaccines, resulting in an upsurge in cases and mortalities. Such a turn of events would call for a major rework of current vaccines coupled with increased booster shots for at-risk population groups.

While the WHO continues to stick to its target of vaccinating 70% of the global population, it has also urged world leaders to continue their efforts in testing while taking other significant, related precautions.

©Photo: Denis Balibouse/Reuters

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