Written by Pavani Hapuarachchi
15 May, 2020 | 6:48 pm
COLOMBO (News 1st): Future action to combat COVID-19 should be guided with the careful assessment of local epidemiology, as countries in the South-East Asia region ease lockdowns in a graded manner, amidst rising infections of the virus.
“Countries in the Region must continue to take evidence-informed action and conduct careful risk assessments while winding back public health and social measures. The focus should be on the local epidemiology of COVID-19, to identify hot-spots and clusters, and the capacity of systems and responders to find, isolate and care for cases, and quarantine contacts,” said Dr Poonam Khetrapal Singh, Regional Director, WHO South-East Asia.
According to Dr. Khetrapal Singh, with countries now preparing to transition towards a “new normal” in which social and economic life can function, continued whole-of-government and whole-of-society approach would be critical.
“In every transmission scenario, the core public health measures remain – rapidly detect, test, isolate, care and trace contacts,” the Regional Director said, adding that moving forward we need to scale up these measures.
In the coming period, all efforts should be made to control and suppress the spread of COVID-19, strengthen and maintain health services, and support each other to stay safe, healthy, and well.
“There can be no illusions: We are in this for the long haul,” said Dr. Khetrapal Singh.
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