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World Health Organization reports highest one-day rise in COVID-19 infections

Photo by United States Mission Geneva

The World Health Organization has recorded the largest daily rise of coronavirus infection worldwide since the pandemic began. 

This was driven primarily by infections in the US, Brazil and India, and totalled 307,930 new cases over 24 hours. India had 94,372 cases on Sunday, followed by 45,523 in the US and 43,718 in Brazil. Global deaths rose by 5,500 which brought the overall death toll to 917,417. 

WHO reports “alarming decline” in child vaccinations due to COVID-19 disruption

Image Credit: James Gathany Content Providers (s): CDC

The World Health Organization and UNICEF have pointed to an “alarming decline” in the levels of children worldwide receiving essential vaccinations due to delivery and uptake disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

This disruption threatens to undo the progress from recent vaccine projects, such as the roll out of the human papillovirus (HPV) vaccine to 106 countries around the world, according to vaccine coverage data from 2019.

The World Health Organization says COVID-19 can linger in the air indoors

The World Health Organization has recoginised that COVID-19 can be transmitted indoors by droplets in the air, reversing its previous stance.

This U-turn comes after 239 scientists from over 30 countries urged the WHO to put more focus on assessing the possible airborne spread of COVID-19. Previously, they had described this type of transmission as unlikely unless it came after certain medical procedures carried out on coronavirus patients.

Trump moves to formally remove the US from the World Health Organization

Photo by Gage Skidmore

President Donald Trump has formally moved to end the US membership of the World Health Organization.

He has notified both the UN and Congress of his intentions to withdraw on 6th July 2021. The Democrat controlled congress will probably not approve the move, but a 1948 resolution allows the US to withdraw if it gives a one year notice and pays all outstanding fees.

Scientists urge World Health Organization to reconsider stance on COVID-19 airborne spread

239 scientists from over 30 countries are urging the World Health Organization to put more focus on assessing the possible airborne spread of COVID-19.

Ahead of their upcoming paper, “It is time to address airborne transmission of COVID-19,” the group of scientists sent a letter outlining the evidence that smaller particles of the virus can infect people while airborne.

WHO halt coronavirus trials of hydroxychloroquine, lopinavir and ritonavir

The World Health Organization has discontinued trials into the viability of hydroxychloroquine, lopinavir and ritonavir as COVID-19 treatments.

This was done as part of the Solidarity Trial’s International Steering Committee’s recommendation, who were overseeing the trial, in light of evidence from investigations into hydroxychloroqine vs standard of care and for lopinavir/ritonavir vs standard of care. Both trials showed little to no reduction in the mortality of hospitalised COVID-19 patients.

Chinese coronavirus set to be put on international health emergency list

The World Health Organisation (WHO) is expected to trigger a Public Health Emergency over the Wuhan coronavirus outbreak, meaning it will join the likes of Polio, Ebola and Swine Flu. It would be only the fifth time such an emergency as been declared.

So far nine people have been killed due to complications around the illness, with 440 cases being reported across China, Japan, the US and South Korea.

WHO officials say Wuhan viral pneumonia outbreak can be passed from person to person

The viral pneumonia outbreak that began in Wuhan China can spread between person to person, according to health experts at the World Health Organisation (WHO).

Dr Takeshi Kasai, the WHO's Regional Director for the western pacific, said: “It is clear that there is at least some human-to-human transmission from the evidence we have, but we don't have clear evidence that shows the virus has acquired the capacity to transmit among humans easily.”

Chinese coronavirus found in Thailand

The recent viral pneumonia outbreak in Wuhan China has spread to Thailand.

The patient is a 61 year old woman who is a Chinese national and had a fever when she arrived in Thailand. She was diagnosed with mild pneumonia and lab testing confirmed it was a novel coronavirus.

The outbreak has been traced back to a market in Wuhan, which sold meat and live animals. There is currently no clear evidence that it can spread between humans and it is believed to have originated in animals.

WHO says Chinese pneumonia outbreak may be a new virus

The recent pneumonia outbreak in Wuhan could potentially be a new virus, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO).

The WHO said it could be an emerging member of the family of viruses that caused the SARS and MERS outbreaks.

The UN health agency said it needed more information to confirm precisely what is causing the infections.

A team of Chinese experts showed a new type of coronavirus caused the outbreak that began in December.

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