The World Health Organisation (WHO) says it is unlikely the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic will end in 2021.
“I think it will be very premature and unrealistic to think that we are going to finish with this virus by the end of the year.
“What we canfinish with – if we are smart – is hospitalisations, deaths and the tragedy associated with this pandemic,’’ Mr Michael Ryan, Director of WHO’s health emergencies programme, said at a news conference on Tuesday.
Ryan said that WHO’s focus at present was to keep transmissions as low as possible and vaccinate more and more people.
According to the official, delivery of vaccine doses has improved compared to 10 weeks ago although there are 'huge challenges’ in distributing them.
“If the vaccines begin to impact not only on death and hospitalisation, but have a significant impact on transmission dynamics and transmission risk, then I believe we will accelerate toward controlling this pandemic,’’ Ryan said.