The World Health Organization (WHO) Secretary General Tan Desai warned on 2 May that the highly transmissible Wuhan pneumonia (novel coronavirus disease, Covid-19) variant strain Delta, which has spread to nearly 100 countries, is entering a “very dangerous period” in the global epidemic.
Tadese said at a WHO press briefing on 2 February that the Delta variant “has been identified in at least 98 countries” and is spreading rapidly, and that the strain is “very dangerous” and continues to evolve and mutate, and is rapidly becoming the dominant strain in many countries. This requires constant assessment and “careful adjustment of public health responses.
I have urged global leaders to ensure that by this time next year, 70 percent of the population in every country has been vaccinated,” which would effectively end the acute phase of the outbreak, he said.
At least 26 percent of the new confirmed cases in the United States are infected with this variant of the virus; the current rate of at least one dose of vaccination for adults across the United States is nearly 67 percent, and the White House announced last week that it would not be able to reach the goal set by President Biden to have 70 percent of adults vaccinated before the Fourth of July.
Tandse said that 3 billion doses of vaccine have been distributed globally, with less than 2 percent distributed to poorer countries, and that “the collective power of some countries could enhance and ensure vaccine sharing.”
WHO called on countries the day before to get at least 10 percent of the population vaccinated as soon as possible by September, and to ensure that health workers, as well as the highest risk groups, are protected.