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News > China

'Countries Must Prepare for the Coronavirus Arrival' WHO Warns

  • A woman wears a protective face mask near the Eiffel Tower, Paris, France, Feb. 15, 2020.

    A woman wears a protective face mask near the Eiffel Tower, Paris, France, Feb. 15, 2020. | Photo: EFE

Published 15 February 2020

French authorities announced today the first coronavirus-related death outside Asia.

The World Health Organization (WHO) Saturday alerted all countries to take preventive measures given that it is "impossible" to predict the direction that the coronavirus outbreak will take.


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"We are concerned about the potential crisis that this coronavirus could cause in countries with weaker health systems," the WHO director Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus siad in Munich.

He explained that the important containment work carried out by the Chinese authorities has given other countries a time of advantage to prepare themselves to fight the disease.

"All countries must prepare for the arrival of COVID-19 cases, treat the sick with dignity and compassion, prevent transmission, and protect health workers," he said.

Adhanom Ghebreyesus said it is necessary to accelerate the financing of actions to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

Regarding scientific research to stop the spread of the disease, he stressed that the international community has been able to unite to identify urgent options for diagnoses, treatments, and vaccines.​​​​​​​

France's Health Minister Agnes Buzyn announced that a Chinese tourist, who had been hospitalized in Paris since January, died from the coronavirus, marking the first Covid-19 death outside Asia.​​​​​

A daughter of the dead patient also fell ill, but Buzyn said she is well and should be released from the hospital soon.

The Health Minister also mentioned that 4 of the 11 confirmed cases in France were declared "cured" and left the hospital.

As of Feb. 15, there are currently 67,192 confirmed cases and 1,527 deaths from the coronavirus outbreak. In Europe, 46 cases have been identified in nine countries.​​​​​​​

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