Issued on: 16/04/2020 – 13:58Modified: 16/04/2020 – 13:58
Europe is in the eye of the storm of the Covid-19 pandemic, with the number of cases nearing a million, and should move with extreme caution when considering easing lockdowns, the World Health Organization's regional director said on Thursday.
"Case numbers across the region continue to climb. In the past 10 days, the number of cases reported in Europe has nearly doubled to close to 1 million," the WHO's European director, Hans Kluge, told reporters in an online briefing.
This meant that about 50% of the global burden of Covid-19 was in Europe, Kluge said.
"The storm clouds of this pandemic still hang heavily over the European region," he added.
We remain in the eye of the storm. When we put proven measures in place – ensuring that we can identify, isolate and test all suspect cases, and quarantine and monitor the health of all close contacts @hans_kluge
— WHO/Europe (@WHO_Europe) April 16, 2020
With a total of 90,180 deaths out of some 1,047,279 infections, Europe is the hardest-hit continent by the pandemic, which has killed a total of 137,499 worldwide, according to an AFP tally based on official figures.
The largest number of deaths have been seen in Italy with 21,645 and Spain with 19,130, followed by France with 17,167 deaths and Britain 12,868.
As some countries start to consider whether restrictions may be eased and whether schools and some workplaces might start to reopen, the WHO's regional director said it was critical to understand the complexity and uncertainty of such transitioning.
Companies and politicians across the world are worried about the economic impact of a long shutdown, and some countries in Europe — such as Germany, Denmark, Spain and others — are beginning to think about how to ease some societal restrictions.
Kluge said tRead More – Source