WHO calls for urgent, aggressive actions as coronavirus cases soar in Southeast Asia region
The World Health Organization (WHO) today called on countries under its South-East Asia zone, including Bangladesh, to urgently scale-up aggressive measures to combat Covid-19, as confirmed cases crossed 480, and the disease claimed eight lives in the region.
"The situation is evolving rapidly. We need to immediately scale up all efforts to prevent the virus from infecting more people," said Dr Poonam Khetrapal Singh, regional director of WHO South-East Asia Region.
Eight of the 11 countries under WHO South-East Asia Region have confirmed cases of Covid-19. Thailand has 177 confirmed cases, Indonesia 134, India 125, Sri Lanka 19, Maldives 13, Bangladesh 10, Nepal and Bhutan one each. These numbers are increasing quickly, she said in a press release.
"More clusters of virus transmission are being confirmed. While this is an indication of an alert and effective surveillance, it also puts the spotlight on the need for more aggressive and whole of society efforts to prevent further spread of Covid-19. We clearly need to do more, and urgently," the regional director said.
Looking at the numbers, some countries are clearly heading towards community transmission of Covid-19, Poonam said, adding this should best be prevented.
Of critical importance are continued efforts to detect, test, treat, isolate and trace contacts, he also said.