Note: This thread is related to #Coronavirus #COVID19

Follow the World Health Organization's instructions to reduce your risk of infection:

1/ Frequently clean hands by using alcohol-based hand rub or soap and water.

2/ When coughing and sneezing cover mouth and nose with flexed elbow or tissue - throw issue away immediately and wash hands.

3/ Avoid close contact with anyone that has fever and cough.

Devi Sridhar
+ Your AuthorsArchive @devisridhar Professor & Chair of Global Public Health, @EdinburghUni Medical School. Director of @GlobalHealthGP. Health governance, financing, policy, systems & security. Jul. 08, 2020 1 min read

Donald Trump's withdrawal of U.S. from the WHO ignores the key role the agency plays in outbreak prevention & response. Not only for COVID, but also for polio, malaria, TB, plague, yellow fever, cholera, Zika virus, & neglected tropical diseases. (thread) 

The WHO functions are technical, normative & convening. The International Health Regulations (within WHO) ensured China reported a novel pathogen on 30th December. Daily technical press briefings started with a Declaration of a PHEIC (highest alarm bell world has) on 30th Jan.

WHO sent an int'l mission to China in Feb to collect key data on how the virus spread, COVID profile & the policy response of the Chinese government. They shared these findings on 24th Feb with the world & based on this info, New Zealand changed from a flu plan to a SARS plan.

Clear messages from WHO were: finding cases, testing, contact tracing, isolation of carriers of the virus & contacts, physical distancing as needed (lockdowns), protection of health workers through PPE & ramping up hospital capacity to treat all patients who needed care.

WHO was criticized in Jan/Feb for praising China, but it has since been revealed that this was the price for getting China’s cooperation. They must keep all countries at the table & sharing data. And those outside China needed the sequencing from the virus to build test kits.

If you want to hear more about WHO's role & what it can and can't do, I did a short interview before this year's World Health Assembly which brings together all its member states.

.@LawrenceGostin & I have also written extensively on WHO together over the past 15 years. Here's our @NEJM piece on what WHO's role in global health law. 

You can follow @devisridhar.


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