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Covid-19 : World Health Organization Celebrates Discovery Of Vaccine

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The World Health Organisation, WHO, has celebrated the discovery of COVID-19 vaccine as the year 2020 draws to an end.

WHO’s Director-General Dr. Tedros Ghebreyesus stated this while giving a toast at the last COVID-19 news conference of the year at the organization headquarters in Geneva.

In a speech posted on the agency’s website, Ghebreyesus said as the year closes, people around the world raised a toast to mark both passing and the coming years.

“People raised a toast for the passing of the year and the dawn of a new one, let me raise a toast to science.

“May we share its results – especially the vaccines – fairly and equitably in the year ahead and together end this pandemic,’’ he said.

Ghebreyesus, however, said there would be set backs and new challenges in the year ahead.

“For example, new variants of COVID-19 and helping people, who are tired of the pandemic continue to combat it.

“At present, we are working closely with scientists all over the world to better understand any and all changes to the virus.

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“We are working with scientists to know how these changes affect its ability to spread or make people sick, or any potential impact on available tests, treatments and vaccines.

“Specifically, we are working with scientists in the UK and South Africa who are carrying out epidemiologic and laboratory studies, which will guide next steps,’’ he said.

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He, however, thanked those countries for testing and tracking new variants and underscores the importance of increasing genomic sequencing capacity worldwide.

“This means the prompt sharing of epidemiological, virological, and full genome sequence information with WHO and other countries and research teams, including through open-source platforms such as `GISAID’ and others.

“Only if countries are looking and testing effectively will you be able to pick up variants and adjust strategies to cope.

“We must ensure that countries are not punished for transparently sharing new scientific findings.

“I am so humbled to work with scientists, epidemiologists and public health experts in WHO and around the world”.

According to him, this week marks 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 of an outbreak of a new disease.”

Hammed Tajudeen is the editor in-chief of Blaze News, holds Higher National Diploma(HND) in Mass Communication, graduated from Osun State Polytechnic, Iree.

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