Some countries that have reopened businesses have seen jumps in coronavirus cases.
The World Health Organization warned that countries that have lifted coronavirus restrictions and reopened businesses, including China, have seen jumps in coronavirus cases, underscoring the “challenges that may lie ahead.”
Before any country begins to lift restrictions, it should have the epidemic under control, ensure that its health systems are able to cope with a potential resurgence and have necessary testing, tracing and isolating infrastructure in place, said WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. The WHO chief said countries should remain cautious when relaxing quarantine and social distancing measures and resuming economic activities, stressing that “a slow, steady, lifting of lockdowns is key to both stimulating economies, while also keeping a vigilant eye on the virus.”
His full statement, per CNBC, read:
“In the Republic of Korea, bars and clubs were shut as a confirmed case led to many contacts being traced,” WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said during a press conference at the agency’s headquarters in Geneva. “In Wuhan, China, the first cluster of cases since the lockdown lifted was identified. Germany has also reported an increase in cases since the easing of restrictions (…) “Countries put these stringent measures in place, sometimes called lockdowns, in response to intense transmission,” he said. “Many have used the time to ramp up their ability to test, trace, isolate and care for patients, which is the best way to track the virus, slow the spread, and take pressure off the health systems.”
Due to the nature of the virus and potential testing limitations in some states, public health officials may not know of a resurgence in cases for days or even weeks after someone became infected, developed symptoms, got tested and received the results.