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    The WHO technical lead on COVID-19 warns of the virus’s persistence in several nations.

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    The World Health Organization’s technical head on COVID-19 issued a warning on Thursday about the virus’s persistence in several nations.

    “Even if the rest of the world seems to have forgotten, we must always take COVID seriously,” American infectious disease researcher Maria Van Kerkhove told Swiss newspaper Le Temps.

    “The virus continues to circulate widely in many countries around the world, increasing its chances of mutating.” “We’re keeping a close eye on the latest variants, including EG.5 and BA.2.86,” she stated.

    From July 17 to August 13, the WHO documented 1.4 million new cases of COVID-19 and over 2,300 fatalities in six areas. This is a 63% increase in instances over the preceding 28-day period.

    Maria Van Kerkhove also urged governments not to let their defences down and destroy their systems in the face of the virus.

    “We anticipate new waves of infections, whether caused by BA.2.86 or other variants.” We must be watchful if we are to avoid further fatalities and a surge in hospitalisations’, she stressed when asked about her outlook for the autumn and winter.

    According to the WHO’s website, over 769 million cases have been registered worldwide, with the epidemic claiming over 6.95 million fatalities.

    The UN health agency also stated that 3,446 additional cases were reported in the previous seven days.

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