The World Health Organization is reversing its position and now is advising against another lockdown. The WHO’s Dr. David Nabarro said, “we don’t advocate lockdowns as the primary means of control of this virus.” The organization expanded on its stance against further lockdowns saying that lockdowns should only be used to “reorganize, regroup, rebalance your resources, protect your health workers who are exhausted, but by and large, we’d rather not do it.”
“Lockdowns have just one consequence that you must never ever belittle and that is making poor people an awful lot poorer,” said Dr. Nabarro.
“Just look at what’s happened to the tourism industry in the Caribbean, for example, or in the Pacific because people aren’t taking their holidays,” Nabarro said. “Look what’s happened to smallholder farmers all over the world. Look what’s happening to poverty levels. It seems that we may well have a doubling of world poverty by next year. We may well have at least a doubling of child malnutrition.”
“And so, we really do appeal to all world leaders: stop using lockdown as your primary control method. Develop better systems for doing it. Work together and learn from each other,” he concluded.
The WHO has had a difficult time handling the worldwide coronavirus pandemic, despite being formed as a global disease response entity. Initially, when the virus was still contained within China, the WHO adopted the Asian powerhouse’s views on the disease, insisting, until early February, that the disease was not being transmitted from human to human and cautioning nations, like the United States, planning to cut off international travel to disease hotspots in order to curtail the spread.
The news of the WHO’s apparent change in policy comes just as countries in Europe look to be experiencing their second wave of the virus. COVID-19 cases in the U.S. are leveling off or declining according to recent data, but countries like Spain and Germany are now bracing for a sharp increase in cases, according to The Associated Press.
As the election nears closer Democrat candidate Joe Biden has repeatedly said that he will support another lockdown if it’s recommended by scientists while President Trump has been staunchly against the idea. Trump has instead focused on reopening the economy, promising a safe vaccine, and getting Americans back to work.
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