The coronavirus pandemic is “accelerating” across the world — and physical distancing measures are not enough to stop the spread, the head of the World Health Organization warned Monday.
“Asking people to stay at home and other physical distancing measures are an important way to slow down the spread of the virus and buy time, but they are defensive measures that won’t help us to win,” Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said at a press briefing.
Tedros said countries hit with the virus also need to implement tactics such as isolating and caring for every confirmed case, as well as tracing and quarantining all of the patient’s close contacts.
“To win, we need to attack the virus with aggressive and targeted tactics,” he told reporters.
Tedros acknowledged that the infectious disease has spread rapidly to more than 300,000 people in “almost every country in the world.”
“The pandemic is accelerating,” he said. “It took 67 days from the first reported case to reach the first 100,000 cases, 11 days for the second 100,000 and just four days for the third 100,000.”
But he insisted that it’s not too late to stop the spread of the dangerous bug, which first emerged in December.
“We are not prisoners to statistics,” he said. “We are not hopeless bystanders. We can change the trajectory of this pandemic.”