WHO / COVID-19 UPDATE

10-Jul-2020 00:04:43
World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General, Dr Tedros Ghebreyesus, told reporters that the WHO is “looking into the origins of the virus,” and said two WHO experts will meet with Chinese scientists to “learn about the progress made in understanding the animal reservoir for COVID-19 and how the disease jumped between animals and humans.” WHO
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STORY: WHO / COVID-19 UPDATE
TRT: 04:43
SOURCE: WHO
RESTRICTIONS: NONE
LANGUAGE: ENGLISH / NATS

DATELINE: 10 JULY 2020, GENEVA, SWITZERLAND / FILE
SHOTLIST
FILE - GENEVA, SWITZERLAND

1. Various shots, exterior WHO Headquarters

10 JULY 2020, GENEVA, SWITZERLAND

2. Wide shot, dais
3. SOUNDBITE (English) Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General, World Health Organization (WHO):
"As we continue to tackle the pandemic, we are also looking into the origins of the virus. Two WHO experts are currently in-route to China to meet with fellow scientists and learn about the progress made in understanding the animal reservoir for COVID-19 and how the disease jumped between animals and humans. This will help lay the ground work for the WHO-led international mission into the origins."
4. Wide shot, dais
5. SOUNDBITE (English) Dr Michael Ryan Executive Director, Health Emergencies Programme, World Health Organization (WHO):
"It is also, and you've seen this in a number of countries managing to deal with clusters and with flare ups by having limited geographic lockdowns, locking down small areas in order to contain the disease. And I think it is a matter of scale. Countries can and should be able to contain the disease through those measures. We all want to avoid whole countries going back into total lockdown. That is not a desire that anybody has, but there may be situations in which that is the only option."
6. Wide shot, dais
7. SOUNDBITE (English) Dr Michael Ryan Executive Director, Health Emergencies Programme, World Health Organization (WHO):
"While we're desperately needing more therapies. I believe the world probably at this point could not be doing more collectively in order to develop those counter-measures that we need."
8. Wide shot, dais
9. SOUNDBITE (English) Dr Michael Ryan Executive Director, Health Emergencies Programme, World Health Organization (WHO):
"There are a number of explanations that can explain the reported rise in the number of pneumonias in Kazakhstan, and we're working with the authorities there to investigate. More than 10,000 laboratory confirmed cases of COVID-19 have been reported by national authorities over the last seven days. So, there's been a big surge in actual COVID cases itself. We're looking at the actual testing and the quality of the testing to make sure that there haven't been false negative tests for some of those other pneumonias that have provisionally tested negative. And that is likely to be a major cause of this, that in many ways, many of these pneumonia cases will also be COVID-19, they just have not been diagnosed correctly."
10. Wide shot, dais
11. SOUNDBITE (English) Dr Michael Ryan Executive Director, Health Emergencies Programme, World Health Organization (WHO):
"But the upward trajectory of COVID-19 cases in the country would suggest that many of these cases are in fact undiagnosed cases of COVID-19. But as I said, we keep an open mind until we have an absolute confirmation of the diagnosis of these clusters."
12. Wide shot, dais
13. SOUNDBITE (English) Dr Maria Van Kerkhove, COVID-19 Technical lead, Health Emergencies Programme, World Health Organization (WHO):
"Outside of healthcare settings, there's the possibility that there could be aerosol, aerosolised particles in specific settings like indoor settings, where there are crowded conditions where there's poor ventilation and where people are spending prolonged periods of time. And so, what we've seen is that there are some outbreaks that have been reported in these closed indoor settings with poor ventilation, which include what you had mentioned, the nightclubs, which have included choirs, fitness centres, where airborne transmission cannot be ruled out. In those outbreaks, there could also be the droplet transmission and fomite, the contaminated surface transmissions. What we are calling for is more systematic research to be done in these types of settings. So, it's not just how and when transmission happens, it's the settings in which they happen."
14. Wide shot, dais
15. SOUNDBITE (English) Maria Van Kerkhove, COVID-19 Technical lead, Health Emergencies Programme, World Health Organization (WHO):
"But the dominant routes of transmission from all of the available evidence and our understanding and working with large groups of different disciplines collectively is droplet in contact, although there may be other modes of transmission, which we don't rule out."
16. Wide shot, dais
17. SOUNDBITE (English) Dr Ruediger Krech, Director, Department of Ethics and Social Determinants World Health Organization (WHO):
“We know that if you're a smoker, the likelihood of developing more severe symptoms for COVID are higher. We know that the way you can attract COVID is not yet established, whether there's a combination with smoking at all. So what you can say is if you're a smoker, you should stop smoking straight away because of the likelihood of having more severe symptoms."
18. Wide shot, dais
STORYLINE
World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General, Dr Tedros Ghebreyesus, today (10 Jul) told reporters that the WHO is “looking into the origins of the virus,” and said two WHO experts will meet with Chinese scientists to “learn about the progress made in understanding the animal reservoir for COVID-19 and how the disease jumped between animals and humans.”

Dr Tedros said, “this will help lay the ground work for the WHO-led international mission into the origins."

The Executive Director of WHO’s Health Emergencies Programme, Dr Michael Ryan, said countries should be able to contain the disease through “limited geographic lockdowns,” adding, “we all want to avoid whole countries going back into total lockdown. That is not a desire that anybody has, but there may be situations in which that is the only option."

Ryan said, “while we're desperately needing more therapies. I believe the world probably at this point could not be doing more collectively in order to develop those counter-measures that we need."

The WHO official said "there are a number of explanations” for the reported rise in the number of pneumonias in Kazakhstan, where more than 10,000 laboratory confirmed cases of COVID-19 have been reported by national authorities over the last seven days.

Ryan said, “there's been a big surge in actual COVID cases itself. We're looking at the actual testing and the quality of the testing to make sure that there haven't been false negative tests for some of those other pneumonias that have provisionally tested negative.”

He said, “the upward trajectory of COVID-19 cases in the country would suggest that many of these cases are in fact undiagnosed cases of COVID-19."

WHO’s COVID-19 Technical lead, Dr Maria Van Kerkhove, said, “there's the possibility that there could be aerosol, aerosolised particles in specific settings like indoor settings, where there are crowded conditions where there's poor ventilation and where people are spending prolonged periods of time,” including in nightclubs, choirs, fitness centres, and other similar settings.

In those outbreaks, she said, “there could also be the droplet transmission and fomite, the contaminated surface transmissions.”

Van Kerkhove called for “more systematic research to be done in these types of settings” but stressed that “the dominant routes of transmission from all of the available evidence and our understanding and working with large groups of different disciplines collectively is droplet in contact, although there may be other modes of transmission, which we don't rule out."

For his part, WHO’s Director of the Department of Ethics and Social Determinants, Dr Ruediger Krech, said, “we know that if you're a smoker, the likelihood of developing more severe symptoms for COVID are higher. We know that the way you can attract COVID is not yet established, whether there's a combination with smoking at all. So, what you can say is if you're a smoker, you should stop smoking straight away because of the likelihood of having more severe symptoms."

According to WHO’s latest situation report, there are 12,102,328 confirmed cases and 551,046 confirmed deaths worldwide.
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