WHO Hopes Coronavirus Pandemic Will Be Over In Less Than 2 Years

WHO Hopes Coronavirus Pandemic Will Be Over In Less Than 2 Years

edros-Adhanom-Ghebreyesus
FABRICE COFFRINI/AFP via Getty Images

The Director-General of the World Health Organization hopes that the coronavirus pandemic will be over in less than two years

When the first cases of COVID-19 were identified in Wuhan, China in December 2019, most of us didn’t realize that it was the beginning of one of the worst pandemics in the history of the world. Over the last eight months, nearly 23 million people worldwide have been infected with the virus, and over 800,000 lives were lost as a result, according to Johns Hopkins University & Medicine. Unfortunately, it seems, the pandemic isn’t end anytime soon. On Friday, WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus announced during a news conference in Geneva that we likely have another year-plus to go.

“We hope to finish the pandemic in less than two years,” he said, pointing out that the 1918 Spanish flu pandemic took two years to overcome. He added that the biggest difference between that pandemic and this one is that due to a progression in technology and the ability for people to travel freely around the world, there is more potential for spread.

“In our situation now with more technology, and of course with more connectiveness, the virus has a better chance of spreading, it can move fast because we are more connected now,” Ghebreyesus said.

However, science has also advanced, giving us more of an opportunity to attack the virus with medicine. By “utilizing the available tools to the maximum and hoping that we can have additional tools like vaccines, I think we can finish it in a shorter time than the 1918 flu,” he continued. He hopes that once a vaccine is developed, the virus can be eliminated sooner than two years, and also points out that “national unity, global solidarity” can also help.