As Europe grapples with lockdowns due to rising tide of coronavirus cases, Hans Kluge, the WHO’s regional director for Europe said one person has been “dying every 17 seconds” in Europe.
“Last week, Europe registered over 29,000 new COVID-19 deaths. That is one person dying every 17 seconds,” Hans Kluge said, adding,”Europe accounts for 28 per cent of global cases, and 26 per cent of deaths cumulatively in the region.”
The WHO official informed that deaths due to COVID-19 had jumped 18 per cent last week. Europe remains the hardest-hit region with the virus accounting for 46 per cent of new global cases and 49 per cent fatalities, the UN health agency informed.
According to reports, in Switzerland, all intensive care units are practically all full even as a French government spokesman said the partial lockdown was unlikely to be lifted. Reports say Portugal has been preparing to extend lockdown restrictions for two further weeks.
In Hungary, the partial lockdown has now been extended until February under the state of emergency declared earlier.
Amid the serious lockdown situation and a growing number of cases, WHO said that vaccines will not arrive in time to defeat the second wave of coronavirus.
“I think it’s at least four to six months before we have significant levels of vaccination going on anywhere,” Michael Ryan, World Health Organization’s emergencies director, said.
“Many countries are going through this wave, and they’re going to go through this wave, and continue through this wave, without vaccines, Ryan said, adding, “We need to understand and internalise that, and realise: we have got to climb this mountain this time, without vaccines.”