WHO / COVID-19 UPDATE

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28-Dec-2020 00:04:27
World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, said “this virus has exposed our societies, exposed us, exposed the problems that we have. The level of inequity, the level of poverty, the level of exclusion,” adding that “health alone will not be a solution. We have to address the root cause of the problem too: the inequity in our society.” WHO

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STORY: WHO / COVID-19 UPDATE
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SOURCE: WHO
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LANGUAGE: ENGLISH / NATS

DATELINE: 28 DECEMBER 2020, GENEVA, SWITZERLAND

SHOTLIST:

FILE - GENEVA, SWITZERLAND

1. Wide shot, WHO emblem outside headquarters

28 DECEMBER 2020, GENEVA, SWITZERLAND

2. Med shot, WHO emblem in press room
3. Wide shot, WHO officials in press room
4.SOUNDBITE (English) Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General, World Health Organization (WHO):
"This week marks the one-year anniversary since WHO learned of cases of ‘pneumonia with unknown cause’ via a bulletin issued by the health authorities in Wuhan and ProMed. We immediately set up an incident management structure to follow this development."
5. Wide shot, WHO officials in press room
6. SOUNDBITE (English) Maria Van Kerkhove, COVID-19 Technical Lead, Health Emergencies Programme, World Health Organization (WHO):
"I mean, we all know it's been an incredibly challenging year. I think one of the things we've seen, in countries at the start of this pandemic, is countries that have had experience with similar pathogens, have had this muscle memory. Those that have dealt with SARS coronavirus in 2003, those that have dealt with MERS coronavirus. Those that have dealt with Ebola and yellow fever and measles and polio, and so many other infectious pathogens have a muscle memory and have had a trauma almost, in dealing with these types of outbreaks, where they have used that experience to build a public health infrastructure, which have used this to build community health workforce, which have used to have trained health professionals at local levels and building hospital facilities and clinics to be able to treat patients."
7. Wide shot, WHO officials in press room
8. SOUNDBITE (English) Mike Ryan, Executive Director, Health Emergencies Programme, World Health Organization (WHO):
"So therefore, I do think we're in a much better place. We're in a better place on behavioral science, clinical science, vaccine science, diagnostic science - so many other areas in terms of that. But we're also in a better place on things like supply chains and collective for production of guidance and rapid dissemination of training and digital, using the digital world in order to amplify what we do. We've got better in innovation. We got better at applying that innovation. We're still not there yet on equity. And I'm sure that the director general will speak to that. There's the final part of this that requires equitable distribution of all this knowledge and all this learning and all of these tools. But we are, in that sense, a learning organization that so many people have contributed to."
9. Wide shot, WHO officials in press room
10. SOUNDBITE (English) Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General, World Health Organization (WHO):
"I think this virus has exposed our societies, exposed us, exposed the problems that we have. The level of inequity, the level of poverty, the level of exclusion. So, health alone will not be a solution. We have to address the root cause of the problem too: the inequity in our society. All the exclusions, racism. All the roots behind the problem. And that means implementing the Sustainable Development Goals in its fullest, caring about our world, the planet, including climate change and the rest. So, implementing the Sustainable Development Goals and achieving the goals we have set ourselves by 2030 and even more ambition will be necessary."
11. Wide shot, WHO officials in press room
12. SOUNDBITE (English) Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General, World Health Organization (WHO):
"Whatever the situation is, I believe it can change. And I call on global community to choose peace, to choose solidarity, to choose caring for one another, caring for each other and to choose without caring for one another or each other that our world could be in trouble. And we have seen that. So that's what I hope for."
13. Med shot, WHO emblem in press room

STORYLINE:

World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, said “this virus has exposed our societies, exposed us, exposed the problems that we have. The level of inequity, the level of poverty, the level of exclusion,” adding that “health alone will not be a solution. We have to address the root cause of the problem too: the inequity in our society.”

Speaking at a press conference in Geneva today (28 Dec), Dr. Tedros said this marks the one-year anniversary since WHO learned of “cases of ‘pneumonia with unknown cause’ via a bulletin issued by the health authorities in Wuhan and ProMed.” He said the Organization immediately set up an incident management structure to follow this development.

The WHO chief said addressing health concerns alone would not be a solution, rather the inequity in society must be addressed. He said this means implementing the Sustainable Development Goals “in its fullest, caring about our world, the planet, including climate change and the rest.”

Dr. Tedros called on the “global community to choose peace, to choose solidarity, to choose caring for one another, caring for each other and to choose without caring for one another or each other that our world could be in trouble.”

WHO’s COVID-19 Technical Lead Maria Van Kerkhove said this has been an “incredibly challenging year.” She said some of the countries that had experience with similar pathogens, “have had this muscle memory.” She said these countries used that experience to build a public health infrastructure, community health workforce, trained health professionals at local levels and built hospital facilities and clinics to be able to treat patients.

Mike Ryan, Executive Director of WHO’s Health Emergencies Programme, said he believes “we're in a much better place.” He added, “We're in a better place on behavioural science, clinical science, vaccine science, diagnostic science - so many other areas in terms of that. But we're also in a better place on things like supply chains and collective for production of guidance and rapid dissemination of training and digital, using the digital world in order to amplify what we do. We've got better in innovation. We got better at applying that innovation. We're still not there yet on equity.” He said the final part requires “equitable distribution of all this knowledge and all this learning and all of these tools.”
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