The coronavirus epidemic is “far from over” in the Asia-Pacific region, and current measures to curb the spread of the virus are buying time for countries to prepare for large-scale community transmissions, a WHO official said on Tuesday.
Even with all the measures, the risk of transmission in the region will not go away as long as the pandemic continues, said Takeshi Kasai, Regional Director for the Western Pacific at the World Health Organization (WHO).
The new coronavirus first surfaced in central China in late 2019. Infections have now exceeded 770,000 cases worldwide, with the United States, Italy and Spain overtaking mainland China in confirmed cases.
“Let me be clear. The epidemic is far from over in Asia and the Pacific. This is going to be a long-term battle and we cannot let down our guard,” Kasai told a virtual media briefing.