World Health Organisation

WHO suspends trials of hydroxychloroquine

Trials in several countries are being "temporarily" suspended as a precaution.

It comes after a recent medical study suggested the drug could increase the risk of patients dying from Covid-19.

US President Donald Trump has promoted the anti-malarial drug, despite warnings from public health officials that it could cause heart problems in Covid-19 patients.

Trump also said he was taking the drug himself to ward off the virus, but said in Sunday he was not taking it any more.

 

     

Testing, tracing, and when to lift restrictions: WHO’s latest advice

He stressed that a mix of social distancing, testing, contact tracing and isolation, will be crucial to further curb the spread of the new coronavirus already devastating much of the globe. 

“We’re all learning all the time and adjusting our strategy, based on the latest available evidence”, said Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, summarising the guidance which will be available in full on the agency’s website on Tuesday.   

WHO and UNICEF to partner on pandemic response through COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund

The COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund has been set up to facilitate an unprecedented global response by supporting the World Health Organization’s (WHO) Strategic Preparedness and Response Plan. As part of the agreement, an initial portion of the money from the Fund – which currently stands at more than $127 million – will flow to UNICEF for its work with vulnerable children and communities all over the world.

WHO guidelines help countries maintain essential health services during COVID-19 pandemic

The rapidly increasing demand on health facilities and health care workers threatens to leave some health systems overstretched and unable to operate effectively.

Previous outbreaks have demonstrated that when health systems are overwhelmed, mortality from vaccine-preventable and other treatable conditions can also increase dramatically. During the 2014-2015 Ebola outbreak, the increased number of deaths caused by measles, malaria, HIV/AIDS, and tuberculosis attributable to health system failures exceeded deaths from Ebola [1,2]. 

Why Taiwan has become a problem for WHO

But despite its efforts, it is still effectively locked out of membership in the World Health Organization (WHO) due to its complex relationship with China.

This all exploded over the weekend when a top WHO official appeared to avoid questions about Taiwan in a TV interview that has gone viral, attracting criticism and even accusations of bias.

What happened?

On Saturday, Hong Kong broadcaster RTHK aired an interview with Bruce Aylward, the WHO assistant director-general, who spoke to journalist Yvonne Tong on a video call.

Pandemic is 'accelerating', WHO warns as cases pass 300,000

It took 67 days from the first reported of Covid-19 to reach 100,000 cases, 11 days for the second 100,000, and just four days for the third 100,000.

But WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said it was still possible to "change the trajectory".

He urged countries to adopt rigorous testing and contact-tracing strategies.

World in 'uncharted territory' on coronavirus outbreak

Its chief, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, said the virus was "unique" but could be contained with the right measures.

Deaths globally have passed 3,000. Most are in China but over the past day there were nine times more new infections outside China than inside.

Dr Tedros insisted: "We can push this virus back". He also said stigma was more dangerous than the disease itself.

The WHO chief said the development of the Covid-19 disease globally was not a "one-way street" and could be combated if countries acted quickly and effectively - starting with containment measures.

'Narrowing window' to contain outbreak, WHO says

Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus's comments follow Iran's announcement of two more deaths, bringing the total there to four.

The window of opportunity to contain the virus was "narrowing", he said.

Iranian health officials said the virus may already be in "all Iran's cities".

Outside China 1,152 cases of the virus have been confirmed in 26 countries and there have been eight deaths.

They include two deaths in South Korea, which has the biggest cluster of confirmed cases apart from China and a cruise ship quarantined in Japan.

Children facing uncertain future, experts warn

Experts say climate change and harmful advertising encouraging fast-food consumption and under-age drinking are putting children at risk.

The UK was ranked among the top 10 countries in the world for the overall health and wellbeing of children.

However, it fell behind in safeguarding the environment for their future.

‘Too early’ to declare China coronavirus a global health emergency: WHO

WHO officials made the announcement following two days of emergency committee meetings of health experts on the virus.

The coronavirus has infected more than 600 people worldwide, though mostly in China. As of Jan. 23, Chinese authorities have reported 17 deaths from the virus so far.

Cases have been reported in China, Thailand, South Korea, Taiwan, Japan and the United States. The virus causes a fever and, in some cases, difficulty breathing.