Islamabad, 15 March 2020 – Staff Reporter:
The COVID-19 pandemic could be brought under control in June if all impacted countries take the virus seriously and implement strong national-level measures to control it, said Zhong Nanshan, a well-known Chinese respiratory expert and head of its top-level panel of scientists against the new coronavirus outbreak.
“In general, coronaviruses are less active in summer when the temperature is relatively high,” Zhong explained. “But the end of the epidemic depends heavily on how seriously every country is taking it.”
“With more hard-hit countries taking it seriously, I believe it is possible to end the epidemic by the end of June,” he added.
The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared the outbreak a pandemic. “That’s the highest level of warning, meaning every country can take approaches suitable for themselves to fight the virus,” Zhong added.
He called on all countries to take national-level measures to prevent and control the disease. “Considering the strong infectiousness of the novel coronavirus, a national-level intervention is needed to contain it.”
WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus has made similar remarks days ago, stressing that the outbreak is not a drill, it is a threat for every country, rich and poor.
Zhong stressed that communication and mutual support are essential to controlling the virus on a global scale. “If the situation is not put under control worldwide, even when there are no new cases in China, it does not mean an end.”
The expert has predicted the epidemic to be contained in China by the end of April.