Lock down not enough, says WHO expert

Lock down not enough, says WHO expert


As the number of global coronavirus cases surpassed 300,000 and the death toll rose to 13,000, World Health Organisation’s (WHO) top emergency expert Mike Ryan said that countries could not simply lock down their societies to defeat coronavirus without public health measures to avoid a resurgence of the virus down the road.

“What we really need to focus on is finding those who are sick, those who have the virus, and isolate them, find their contacts and isolate them,” Dr Ryan said. “If we don’t put in place the strong public health measures now, when those movement restrictions and lock downs are lifted, the danger is the disease will jump back up.”

Nearly one in four Americans are under orders to close up shop and stay at home. At least 23,941 cases of the novel coronavirus have been reported in the US and 306 people have died. Bolivia’s interim government announced it would postpone presidential elections originally slated for May 3 and institute a mandatory countrywide quarantine for 14 days.

Brazil’s largest state Sao Paulo will essentially shut down for two weeks to help fight the coronavirus, its governor said, as President Jair Bolsonaro said again that 'hysteria' over the outbreak could cause more harm than the virus itself.

China saw 46 new cases, the fourth straight day with an increase, with all but one of those imported from overseas. Australian PM ordered many venues, including pubs, casinos, gyms and cinemas, to close. Members of a South Korean church scuffled with police on Sunday, media reported, as government restrictions on religious services and other gatherings took effect.

The Italian government has ordered all businesses to shut until April 3, with the exception of those essential to maintaining the country's supply chain. Italy recorded a jump in deaths from coronavirus of almost 800, taking the toll in the world’s hardest-hit country to almost 5,000.