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US 'well-positioned' to handle continuing COVID-19 pandemic: WHO emergencies chief Dr Michael Ryan

WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said that all countries should have heeded the agency's warning when it declared COVID-19 to be a global emergency on January 30.

Published: 28th April 2020 12:45 AM  |   Last Updated: 28th April 2020 12:45 AM   |  A+A-

WHO Health Emergencies Programme Director Dr Michael Ryan

WHO Health Emergencies Programme Director Dr Michael Ryan (File photo| AFP)

By Associated Press

GENEVA: The World Health Organization's emergencies chief says the US is "well-positioned" to handle the continuing COVID-19 pandemic and said states may have different strategies because they're at different points in their respective outbreaks.

In a news briefing on Monday, Dr Michael Ryan said that although the UN health agency issues epidemic control recommendations to all its member countries, it's up to countries to decide whether or not to follow such guidance.

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"I believe the federal government and the system of governors are working together to move America and its people through this very difficult situation with public health and other scientific leaders," Ryan said in Geneva, adding that the American plan for exiting lockdowns appears to be based on several parameters, including a downward trajectory in cases and sufficient health care capacity.

He added that the US had a "superb" public health infrastructure able to manage the transition once restrictive measures are loosened.

WHO's director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said all countries should have heeded the agency's warning when it declared COVID-19 to be a global emergency on January 30, when there were only 82 cases of the disease beyond China.

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