WHO ‘very concerned’ as virus numbers climb in Papua New Guinea

The WHO has expressed concern about a “sharp increase” of COVID-19 cases in Papua New Guinea warning the outbreak was at a critical stage and could fuel a much larger epidemic.

WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom, speaking at a virtual news conference, said on Friday that although the numbers were relatively small in PNG, the outbreak’s pace was concerning.

The WHO has expressed concern about a “sharp increase” of COVID-19 cases in Papua New Guinea warning the outbreak was at a critical stage and could fuel a much larger epidemic.

WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom, speaking at a virtual news conference, said on Friday that although the numbers were relatively small in PNG, the outbreak’s pace was concerning.

“Papa New Guinea is a perfect example of why vaccine equity is so important.”

Throughout all of 2020, the impoverished country of more than eight million people recorded just 900 cases, but on Thursday, its total climbed to more than 9,300 with 82 deaths.

But there are fears the real scale of the outbreak is much larger due to low testing rates.

Papua New Guinea’s Health Minister Jelta Wong said the number of health workers infected with the virus continued to grow.

Vaccination efforts have centred on front-line workers in the capital of Port Moresby, with 1,600 people so far receiving the jab.

Related Articles

Back to top button