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WHO: COVID-19 Not a Global Pandemic Global Risk Assessment Not to be Upgraded

2020/02/18

On 17 February in Geneva, WHO held a press briefing on the latest developments of the novel coronavirus pneumonia (NCP, or COVID-19) outbreak.

At the press briefing, WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus noted that the statistics on COVID-19 released by China show a decline in new cases. Based on this, WHO has maintained its assessment that COVID-19 is not a global pandemic, and it will not upgrade the global risk assessment of the outbreak.

Dr. Michael Ryan, Executive Director of WHO Health Emergencies Program, said that the organization is not seeing efficient community transmission outside of China. The WHO international team of experts now on the ground in China is working with the Chinese side in joint research and will conduct field visits. WHO also noted that using infusions of blood plasma from people who have recovered from COVID-19 is a very valid way to explore therapeutics.

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