“The threat of COVID-19 persists,” warned this week at a press conference the director general of the World Health Organization (WHO), Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, who estimated the number of weekly deaths from the disease at 10,000 and warned about the probability that the true figure is much higher.
The health agency shows moderate optimism in the face of the current epidemiological panorama that presents “intense transmission in various parts of the world”, although it is confident that the public health emergency will end this year.
As reported by the official UN news website, Adhanom Ghebreyesus noted the persistence of gross inequalities in access to testing, treatment and vaccination, while COVID-19 continues to be a dangerous virus for health, the economy and society in general.
He also expressed his concern about the current epidemiological panorama presented by COVID-19, “with intense transmission in various parts of the world and a recombinant subvariant that spreads rapidly.”
Likewise, Tedros explained that in recent weeks, reports of hospitalizations have increased and there has been greater pressure on health systems, especially in temperate regions of the northern hemisphere, where respiratory diseases such as influenza also circulate.
Likewise, Tedros also highlighted the increase in Europe and the United States, especially in the northeast of the country, of one of the omicron subvariants originally detected last October, XBB.1.5.
So far, according to the Organization’s chief epidemiologist, Dr. Maria Van Kerkhove, the subvariant has been detected in 29 countries, but she did not rule out the possibility that it is found in more countries “since sequencing is less and less available globally, so it’s hard for us to track down each of these omicron sub-variants.”