Coronavirus: keeping borders closed is unsustainable, WHO says

Coronavirus: keeping borders closed is unsustainable, WHO says
Credit: Belga

Keeping borders closed is an unsustainable strategy in the fight against the new coronavirus (Covid-19), the World Health Organisation (WHO) says on Monday.

Many countries around the world are closing their borders to nationals from risk areas or imposing quarantines and tests, but without a concerted strategy.

"It is going to be almost impossible for individual countries to keep their borders shut for the foreseeable future,” said WHO Emergencies Director Michael Ryan at a virtual press conference.

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“Continuing to keep international borders sealed is not necessarily a sustainable strategy for the world’s economy, for the world’s poor, or for anybody else,” Ryan said.

It is very difficult to have a “global one size fits all policy,” Ryan acknowledged, as outbreaks develop differently depending on where they occur.

Travel restrictions should be taken in conjunction with other measures, Ryan stressed, clarifying that such restrictions are not effective in limiting the movement of the virus on their own.

As of 26 July, the new coronavirus has infected 15,785,641 people around the world, and 640,016 people have died from it, according to the WHO.

Belgium has seen 66,026 confirmed cases and 9,821 deaths since the start of the pandemic, according to figures from the Federal Public Health Service on Monday.

The Brussels Times

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