Medical, health experts react to World Health’s decision to classify coronavirus as a global pandemic

Medical, health experts react to World Health’s decision to classify coronavirus as a global pandemic
Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus

The World Health Organization (WHO) has officially declared that coronavirus now fits the definition of a pandemic. And medical experts and health care activists have been discussing this development on Twitter.

On Twitter, WHO Director Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus explained, “WHO has been assessing this outbreak around the clock and we are deeply concerned both by the alarming levels of spread and severity."

According to Ghebreyesus, words that should be emphasized in the weeks ahead include “prevention” and “preparedness.”

Dr. Dena Grayson, who ran for Congress as a Democrat, believes that the coronavirus should have been called a pandemic earlier.

Grayson tweeted, “As I've said for weeks, the #coronavirus is a global #pandemic. The Northern Hemisphere is still in the midst of accelerating spread. The Southern Hemisphere *must* prepare NOW, as their flu season approaches.”

Dr. Sarah Myhre wrote, “Act act act. Cancel everything. Call your family. Restrict activities. Have a coming/going leaving protocol for your home. Simplify everything. Prioritize your family. Prioritize each other.”

Alex Verbeek tweeted that it’s important to understand patterns of coronavirus, noting that “most countries follow the same trajectory of the #coronavirus.”

Fredrik Hirsch, responding to Verbeek’s tweet, noted the importance of “strict control” and wrote that Norway has been “even ahead of Sweden” when responding to coronavirus.

Rev. William J. Barber asserted that for the poor, inadequate access to health care is a danger to everyone.

“Because poor & low-income Americans see walking in the door of a clinic or emergency room as cost-prohibitive, we are all in danger,” Barber warned.

Avis Favaro, a medical correspondent for CTV in Canada, warned that despite the “pandemic” classification by WHO, Canadians shouldn’t panic.

Favaro wrote, “The @WHO announcement will sound scary to many Canadians but know that Canada has been preparing for #pandemic #Covid19 since late January. And we've had as one doctor put it ‘the gift of time’ to prepare. Wash your hands - a lot and listen to public health.”

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