USA urges World Health Organization begin independent review of COVID-19 management 'immediately'

106,000 COVID-19 cases recorded in 24hrs — highest toll in a single day

Tedros added that nearly "two-thirds of these cases were reported in just four countries".

There are now close to 5 million global cases and roughly 325,000 deaths since the virus emerged in Wuhan, China, less than five months ago, according to government data compiled by Johns Hopkins University, which is tracking the pandemic.

More than 5.12 million cases of COVID-19 have been reported worldwide, including 332,0526 deaths, since the virus emerged in the central Chinese city of Wuhan late a year ago, according to the latest Reuters tally.

Tedros Ghebreyesus pointed out that we still have a long way to go until the end of the pandemic.

"The pandemic has taught and informed many lessons", he added.

Dr Ghebreyesus expressed concern about the rising numbers of cases in low- and middle-income countries, stating that WHO was supporting Member States to ensure supply chains remained open and medical supplies reached health workers and patients. Health is not a cost.

The WHA resolution bucked a trend that has seen China and the USA butt heads at recent worldwide summits over various stipulations in proposed multilateral agreements, in several cases resulting in no final recommendations being made.

He recognised the risk to life from any suspension of essential services, like child immunisation while battling COVID-19, and ensuring health systems continue to function is an equally high priority. He has repeatedly criticized the WHO for its early response to the outbreak and praise for China, at a time when Trump's own response of the outbreak in the United States -the largest in the world - has come under criticism.

The United States is the biggest contributor to the WHO's budget and has already suspended funding, accusing the organisation of severely mismanaging and covering up the spread of the virus.

In that same letter, Trump warned he would make permanent a temporary freeze on US funding for the World Health Organization unless it commits to "substantive improvements" within the next 30 days. He said he was committed to accountability and would carry out a review into the response to the pandemic. A review has been asked by member states and led to a resolution about being passed by consensus this week.

Giroir, in his statement with a decidedly more diplomatic tone, said the United States was "encouraged" by an initial review by the WHO's Independent Oversight and Advisory Committee over the January to April period. "It has to be done and when it's done it has to be a comprehensive one", Tedros said of the review, not specifying when it would be done. Peru, Mexico and Chile have also seen steady increases in infections.

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