LONDON, May 5 (Reuters) – COVID-19 no longer represents a global health emergency, the World Health Organization said on Friday, a major step toward an end to the epidemic that has killed more than 6.9 million people, crippled the world economy and devastated societies.
The World Health Organization’s emergency committee met on Thursday to recommend that the UN agency end the more than three-year-old public health emergency of international concern.
“Therefore, the declaration of Covid-19 as a global health emergency is with great hope,” said WHO Director-General Theodore Adhanom Ghebreyesus.
The World Health Organization’s Emergency Committee first announced that Covid represented the highest level of alert three years ago on January 30, 2020. The situation will help focus global attention on the health threat, as well as strengthen cooperation on vaccines and treatments.
Lifting it is a sign of progress the world has made in these areas, but even if Covid-19 does not represent an emergency, the WHO says it is here to stay.
“Covid has changed the world, it has changed us. And that’s the way it should be. If we go back to the way things were before Covid-19, we will fail to learn our lessons and fail our future generations,” said Ghebreyesus.
In the year From a peak of more than 100,000 people per week in January 2021, it has fallen to more than 3,500 per week by April 24, 2023. World Health Organization information.
Although the World Health Organization began using the term Covid in March 2020, it has not declared the beginning or end of the epidemic.
Last year, US President Joe Biden said there was an epidemic Above. Like many other countries, the world’s largest economy has begun to lift a domestic state of emergency for Covid, which means it will stop paying for vaccinations, among other benefits.
Other states have taken similar steps. In April last year, the European Union declared the end of the emergency period of the epidemic, and the World Health Organization’s Africa chief, Matshidiso Moeti, said that in December, it is time to move to normal management of Covid throughout the continent.
Ending an emergency may mean that international cooperation or funding efforts come to an end or shift focus, although many have already adapted as the epidemic recedes in different regions.
Reporting by Jennifer Rigby in London and Bhanvi Satija in Bengaluru; Edited by Josephine Mason
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