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WHO issues ‘wakeup call’ raising coronavirus threat to ‘highest level’

He said, “This virus may be on its way and you need to be ready. You have a duty to your citizens, you have a duty to the world to be ready”.

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Patients infected with the novel coronavirus

United Nations, Feb 29 : The World Health Organisation (WHO) has raised coronavirus threat to the “highest level” in a “wakeup” call to governments amid reports that the disease has spread to 48 countries.

WHO Executive Director of health emergencies, Mike Ryan, said on Friday, “We are on the highest level of alert or highest level of risk assessment in terms of spread and in terms of impact”.

Speaking at a news conference in Geneva, he said that it was a “reality check” and a wakeup call to all governments to get ready to face the threat.

He said, “This virus may be on its way and you need to be ready. You have a duty to your citizens, you have a duty to the world to be ready”.

At the UN, Secretary-General Antonio Guterres added a note of caution, “This not a time for panic – it is time to be prepared – fully prepared”.

“We know containment is possible, but the window of opportunity is narrowing”, he said and called on “all governments to step up and do everything possible to contain the disease – and to do so without stigmatisation, respecting human rights”.

WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said Geneva that the disease should be approached with urgency, but without panic.

“Our greatest enemy right now is not the virus itself. It’s fear, rumours and stigma”, he said.

He said that WHO had not declared a Coronavirus pandemic because there was no evidence ” as yet that the virus is spreading freely in communities”.

There has, however, been one case in the United States of a person who had no known contact with anyone suffering from the disease and had not travelled to countries hit by it coming down with coronavirus.

Tedros said that as of Friday morning the disease had spread beyond China to 48 countries, afflicting 4,351 people and causing 67 deaths.

The outbreaks in four European countries and Nigeria have been traced to Italy, he said.

While coronavirus could become a pandemic, Tedros said that “with the right measures, it can be contained”.

Ryan said that for it to become a pandemic every person the planet will have to be exposed to it and that is not backed by data now.

He said that China has shown that it can be prevented if actions are taken quickly.

(Arul Louis can be contacted at [email protected])

Entertainment

Jennifer Stone ready to join COVID-19 battle as registered nurse

In the same post, she further talked about her immediate goal for her new career.

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jennifer stone registered nurse

Los Angeles, April 9 : At a time when several global personalities are making donations to fight the battle against the novel coronavirus, Hollywood actress Jennifer Stone has decided to fight the pandemic as a registered nurse.

The former “Wizards Of Waverly Place” actress announced her plan to fight the global virus as a registered nurse, reports aceshowbiz.com.

She uploaded a photograph on Instagram of her three different ID badges, she captioned it: “A very good friend of mine (@maiarawalsh ) pointed out to me that today is #worldhealthday. It is also the day I went from a volunteer, then a student nurse, and now an RN resident.”

Wizards of Waverly Place's Jennifer Stone Celebrates Being a Nurse ...

In the same post, she further talked about her immediate goal for her new career.

“I just hope to live up to all of the amazing healthcare providers on the front lines now as I get ready to join them,” she said.

Stone completed her nursing school in December 2019.

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Health

Yechury criticises govt over lower Covid-19 testing

According to data, India is testing 102 people per million, Pakistan 191 per million, the USA 6,336 per million. Hong Kong has fared the best by testing 12,900 per million.

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sitaram yechuri

New Delhi, April 9 : On Thursday when India’s coronavirus case count was at 5,734, CPI(M) General Secretary Sitaram Yechury criticised the government over less Covid-19 tests.

Citing data presented by Steve H. Hanke of the Johns Hopkins University, Yechury said India was testing less cases per million, which was even lower than Pakistan.

“Third week into the lockdown, it’s utmost important that we test more than we were doing at the beginning of the lockdown. But that doesn’t seem to be the case. We are testing at even lower rates than Pakistan. The purpose of lockdown is defeated without more testing,” Yechury said.

According to data, India is testing 102 people per million, Pakistan 191 per million, the USA 6,336 per million. Hong Kong has fared the best by testing 12,900 per million.

Yechury also criticised lack of PPEs and ventilators and said it was creating hindrance in India’s war on Covid-19. “The Modi government has failed to provide answers, hiding behind distractions, fudging data,” he said.

However, the central and the state governments have ramped up testing facilities. The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) on Monday said it was considering to scale up testing capacity to 100,000 a day.

But with crucial time running out, the opposition is now running out of patience.

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Cities

Kerala Police launches sanitisation bus

Behra said more such buses would be made available across the state for the security force personnel.

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Sanatisation Bus

Thiruvananthapuram, April 9 : State police chief Loknath Behra, here on Thursday, launched a sanitisation bus for cops doing round the clock duty to curb the spread of Covid-19.

The bus, which is currently operates in the state capital district, helps sanitise the officials on their duty spots. Those wishing to be sanitised has to enter the bus from one door and walk out of the other door.

Behra said more such buses would be made available across the state for the security force personnel.

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