When Covid-19 first appeared in China last December, I don’t think any of us expected it to stay on this long.
But now, it’s been going on for about four months, and it does not look like the situation is about to be getting better any time soon.
In fact, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO), the global pandemic is clearly “accelerating”.
And They’ve Got The Numbers To Back It Up
Over 300,000 cases of Covid-19 have been confirmed around the world so far, and it is pretty close to reaching 400,000.
The number of confirmed cases currently sits at 379,108 and there have been 16,524 deaths.
WHO Chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus warned on Monday, 23 Mar, that the pandemic is “accelerating”, but it is still possible to change its trajectory by going on the attack.
During a virtual news conference, he talked about how it took 67 days for the virus to infect 100,000 people worldwide since it started back in December 2019.
It then took 11 days for the next 100,000 cases and merely 4 days for the third 10,000 cases.
At this rate, it looks like we’re going to hit 400,000 cases in another day or two.
We Need To Attack The Virus
Clearly, the situation is getting worse as the days go by but Mr Tedros said that it was still possible to change the trajectory of the virus.
“We are not helpless bystanders. We can change the trajectory of this pandemic,” he said.
He urged more countries to implement contact-tracing strategies and start conducting rigorous testing.
“What matters most is what we do. You can’t win a football game by defending. You have to attack as well,” said Mr Tedros in the news conference, where he was joined by FIFA president Gianni Infantino.
“To win, we need to attack the virus with aggressive and targeted tactics – testing every suspected case, isolating and caring for every confirmed case, and chasing and quarantining every close contact.”
Both Mr Tedros and Mr Infantino launched a campaign together to let people know how they could protect and prevent themselves from being infected, in order to “kick out the coronavirus”.
The campaign focused on using five simple steps to take on “hands, elbow, face, distance and feel” to fight the coronavirus.
Various football stars from around the world, including Lionel Messi and Gary Lineker, were featured in a social media video clip where they talked about some important steps that everyone could take to protect themselves.
Alarming Number Of Health Workers Falling Sick
Dr Tedros also expressed his concern about the high numbers of health workers becoming infected themselves while treating patients, due to a shortage of adequate personal protective equipment.
“Health workers can only do their jobs effectively when they can do their jobs safely,” he said.
“Even if we do everything else right, if we don’t prioritise protecting health workers many people will die because the health worker who could have saved their life is sick.”
He added that the WHO has been working on prioritising and rationalising the use of protective equipment, as well as addressing the global shortage of it.
Meanwhile, all of us can play our part by following the set of guidelines provided by the WHO on how to protect ourselves. Social distancing, practising good hygiene and staying home if you feel unwell is crucial in preventing the further spread of Covid-19, and ensuring that it is contained as soon as possible.