WHO / HEALTH EMERGENCIES

07-Sep-2022 00:05:38
The number of weekly reported deaths by COVID-19 has dropped by more than 80 percent since February, but last week one person died with the virus every 44 seconds, said the World Health Organization (WHO) chief. WHO
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STORY: WHO / HEALTH EMERGENCIES
TRT: 5:38
SOURCE: WHO
RESTRICTIONS: PLEASE CREDIT WHO ON SCREEN
LANGUAGE: ENGLISH / NATS

DATELINE: 7 SEPTEMBER 2022, GENEVA, SWITZERLAND
SHOTLIST
1. Wide shot, press conference
2. SOUNDBITE (English) Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General, World Health Organization (WHO):
“First, to the COVID-19 pandemic. The global decline in reported cases and deaths is continuing. This is very encouraging. But there is no guarantee these trends will persist. The most dangerous thing is to assume they will. The number of weekly reported deaths may have dropped by more than 80% since February, but even so, last week one person died with COVID every 44 seconds.”
3. Wide shot, press conference
4. SOUNDBITE (English) Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General, WHO:
“You might be tired of hearing me say the pandemic is not over. But I will keep saying it until it is. This virus will not just fade away.”
5. Wide shot, press conference
6. SOUNDBITE (English) Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General, WHO:
“Pandemics threaten every single person on earth, so it’s important that everyone can have their say on what this landmark international agreement looks like.”
7. Wide shot, press conference
8. SOUNDBITE (English) Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General, WHO:
“To enable that to happen, WHO is holding public hearings, to give as many people as people as possible the opportunity to have input into the negotiating process.”
9. Wide shot, press conference
10. SOUNDBITE (English) Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General, WHO:
“We invite everyone, everywhere to have their say, by submitting a video statement between the 9th and 15th of September, responding to this question: ‘Based on your experience with the COVID-19 pandemic, what do you believe should be addressed at the international level to better protect against future pandemics?’ We look forward to receiving many suggestions and ideas, from as many countries as possible.”
11. Wide shot, press conference
12. SOUNDBITE (English) Maria Van Kerkhove, Technical Lead Covid-19, Health Emergencies Programme, WHO:
“These vaccines continue to work incredibly well against preventing severe disease and death. The vaccines that were developed on the ancestorial strain, the original virus that was circulating, continue to work. So, getting vaccinated, making sure you receive all of the doses that you have remains critically important.”
13. Wide shot, press conference
14. SOUNDBITE (English) Michael Ryan, Executive Director, Health Emergencies Programme, WHO:
“That’s the prospect of Mucosal vaccines bring, not only an opportunity to reduce the severity of infection but an opportunity to reduce the onward transmission of the virus. And that may offer us a much stronger prospect for control of Covid in the long run, but that remains to be seen because a lot of work needs to be done. We don't have access to that data yet. But we do look forward to that and we encourage the kind of work that develops new innovative vaccines that allows us to go to second and third generation doses of vaccines that we may need ultimately to deal with the end of COVID and to deal with future respiratory threats.”
15. Wide shot, press conference
16. SOUNDBITE (English) Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General, WHO:
“Now to monkeypox, where we are continuing to see a downward trend in Europe. While reported cases from the Americas also declined last week, it’s harder to draw firm conclusions about the epidemic in that region. Some countries in the Americas continue to report increasing numbers of cases, and in some there is likely to be under-reporting due to stigma and discrimination, or a lack of information for those who need it most.
But as I said earlier, a downward trend can be the most dangerous time, if it opens the door to complacency. WHO continues to recommend that all countries persist with a tailored combination of public health measures, testing, research and targeted vaccination, where vaccines are available.”
17. Wide shot, press conference
18. SOUNDBITE (English) Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General, WHO:
“Now to Pakistan, where almost 1500 health facilities have been affected by flooding. There are limited stocks of emergency medicines and other health supplies. WHO has delivered medicines, water purification kits, tents and other supplies, and together with our partners we have set up more than 4500 medical camps to provide essential health services. The challenge is huge.”
19. Wide shot, press conference
20. SOUNDBITE (English) Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General, WHO:
“We remain deeply concerned about the situation in the Sahel and the Greater Horn of Africa, and particularly in Somalia. Parts of Somalia are projected to fall into famine in the very near future unless there is an urgent scale-up in humanitarian assistance. Millions more people in other parts of the country are facing extreme hunger, and it is likely that many people have already starved to death.”
21. Wide shot, press conference
22. SOUNDBITE (English) Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General, WHO:
“Somalia and its neighbours in the Greater Horn of Africa – as well as the countries of the Sahel region – need the world’s help, and they need it now.”
STORYLINE
The number of weekly reported deaths by COVID-19 has dropped by more than 80 percent since February, but last week one person died with the virus every 44 seconds, said the World Health Organization (WHO) chief.

Speaking to journalists in Geneva today (7 Sep), Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus repeated that “the pandemic is not over” and that “this virus will not just fade away.”

Ghebreyesus also spoke about a new international instrument on pandemic prevention, preparedness and response, highlighting the second round of public hearings on the 29th and 30th of September.
WHO’s chief said, “Pandemics threaten every single person on earth, so it’s important that everyone can have their say on what this landmark international agreement looks like.”

Ghebreyesus invited everyone, everywhere, to have their say, by submitting a video statement between the 9th and 15th of September, responding to this question: “Based on your experience with the COVID-19 pandemic, what do you believe should be addressed at the international level to better protect against future pandemics?”

The Technical Lead for COVID-19 in the Health Emergencies Programme at WHO, Maria Van Kerkhove, noted that vaccines “continue to work incredibly well against preventing severe disease and death.”

“The vaccines that were developed on the ancestorial strain, the original virus that was circulating, continue to work. So, getting vaccinated, making sure you receive all of the doses that you have remains critically important”, Kerkhove said.

Michael Ryan, the Executive Director of WHO’s Health Emergencies Programme, said Mucosal vaccines offer “not only an opportunity to reduce the severity of infection but an opportunity to reduce the onward transmission of the virus.”

Ryan said that WHO looks forward to that and encourages “the kind of work that develops new innovative vaccines that allows us to go to second and third generation doses of vaccines that we may need ultimately to deal with the end of COVID and to deal with future respiratory threats.”

On monkeypox, the agency noted a downward trend in Europe and confirmed that cases also declined in the Americas, even though it’s harder to draw firm conclusions about the epidemic in that region.

Some countries in the Americas continue to report increasing numbers of cases, and in some there is likely to be under-reporting due to stigma and discrimination, or a lack of information for those who need it most.

Despite this news, WHO’s Director-General said that “a downward trend can be the most dangerous time, if it opens the door to complacency.”

Because of that, Ghebreyesus added, WHO continues to recommend that all countries persist with a tailored combination of public health measures, testing, research and targeted vaccination, where vaccines are available.

Ghebreyesus also mentioned the crisis in Pakistan, where almost 1500 health facilities have been affected by flooding and there are limited stocks of emergency medicines and other health supplies.

WHO has delivered medicines, water purification kits, tents and other supplies. Together with its partners, the agency has set up more than 4500 medical camps to provide essential health services.

According to WHO’s chief, “the challenge is huge.”

Ghebreyesus also remains “deeply concerned” about the situation in the Sahel and the Greater Horn of Africa, and particularly Somalia, where parts of the country are projected to fall into famine in the very near future unless there is an urgent scale-up in humanitarian assistance.

According to the Director-General, “millions more people in other parts of the country are facing extreme hunger, and it is likely that many people have already starved to death.”

“Somalia and its neighbours in the Greater Horn of Africa – as well as the countries of the Sahel region – need the world’s help, and they need it now”, Ghebreyesus concluded.
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