|A COVID-19 testing center in Auckland, New Zealand (photo: AFP/VNA)
Tedros Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General, said during an online COVID-19 media briefing on Wednesday, that four out of six of the WHO sub-regions saw cases increasing in the last week. In many countries, BA.4 and BA.5 are driving waves. Some Asian countries have also detected the new variants.
He said compounding the challenge are a number of factors. First, testing has reduced dramatically in many countries. This obscures the true picture of an evolving virus and the real burden of COVID-19 disease globally.
These challenges require action at a global, national and local level. He said essential steps to take include vaccinate and boost those at most risk. This includes older people, people with chronic illnesses, the immunocompromised and health workers.