WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus
WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. Image credit - flickr.com

World Health Organization (WHO) Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus on Wednesday said lockdowns will not be sufficient to eradicate the coronavirus pandemic.

A media report quoted Ghebreyesus as saying, “To slow the spread of COVID-19, many countries introduced ‘lockdown’ measures. But on their own, these measures will not extinguish epidemics.”

He also claimed the lockdown measures have only reduced the pressure on a country’s health systems and the time period for lockdown should be used for finding ways of tackling the deadly virus which has taken away more than 18,000 human lives worldwide.

“Asking people to stay at home and shutting down population movement is buying time & reducing the pressure on health systems,” he said, adding, “We call on all countries who have introduced so-called lockdown measures, to use this time to attack the virus,” he added.

WHO has recently discouraged the use of phrase ‘social distancing’ and urged people to use the phrase ‘physical distancing’ instead.

This, according to WHO, is to provide a clear understanding that the governments’ directives to stay home amid the coronavirus outbreak is not about breaking social contacts with family and friends but about keeping a physical distance to ensure the disease doesn’t spread.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday called for a 21-day complete lockdown in the entire nation in an effort to contain the COVID-19 pandemic.

In a special televised address to the nation the Prime Minister said even those nations with the best of the medical facilities could not contain the virus and that the social distancing is the only option to mitigate it.

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