Coronavirus Granted the Status of a Pandemic by the WHO – A First Since the Outbreak of H1N1

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The Covid-19 viral disease which began its sweep all across the world since December has been officially declared as a Pandemic by the World Health Organization. The viral strain which has infected nearly 114 countries and killed more than 4,000 people in its wake has finally been prompted the WHO to take concrete steps due to its growing concerns and immense effect that it has left on the world stage.

“This is the first pandemic caused by the coronavirus,” WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus declared at a briefing in Geneva. “It’s the first time the WHO has called an outbreak a pandemic since the H1N1 swine flu in 2009.”

Even though Tedros raised the status for the strain to its highest level, he still hopes that the COVID-19 can be contained before it can cause any further harm. He urged countries all around the world to take strict actions to stop the disease dead in its tracks. “WHO has been in full response mode since we were notified of the first cases,” Tedros said. “And we have called every day for countries to take urgent and aggressive action. We have rung the alarm bell loud and clear.”

While the parameters for declaring a viral strain are unknown, the data at hand shows that eight countries – Including the U.S have reported more than 1,000 cases of the COVID -19, which puts the number of people infected at an all-time high of 120,000.

By taunting the viral strain as a Pandemic, the WHO placed it in a completely different category than the recent outbreaks – Including the Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo, the Zika virus outbreak of 2016 and the 2014 Ebola outbreak in the coast of West Africa. The following rise in virus strains were deemed as international emergencies.

After the status garnered to the coronavirus, certain changes are expected to appear on the international stage in terms of handling of the virus. While they are unknown at the moment, we can expect a few restrictions on the way of life in the infected countries at best.

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