Coronavirus (COVID-19) Collection
- Nearly two years since the start of the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic, which has caused over 5 million deaths, the world continues to be on high COVID-19 alert. The World Health Organization (WHO), in collaboration with national authorities, public health institutions and scientists have been closely monitoring and assessing the evolution of SARS-CoV-2 since January 2020 (WHO 2021a; WHO 2021b). The emergence of specific SARS-CoV-2 variants were characterised as Variant of Interest (VOI) and Variant of Concern (VOC), to prioritise global monitoring and research, and to inform the ongoing global response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The WHO and its international sequencing networks continuously monitor SARS-CoV-2 mutations and inform countries about any changes that may be needed to respond to the variant, and prevent its spread where feasible.
- We thank Dr Paredes et al. for their comment to our editorial (Petersen et al., 2021) on the potential use of International Health Regulations (IHR) and immunizations against SARS-CoV-2.
- With the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic passing one million ill people (1,521,252 confirmed cases and 92 798 reported deaths (WHO Sit Rep 10 April), most countries are occupied with controlling the outbreak. The economic consequences are enormous. The World Trade Organization (WTO) estimates that “commerce could shrink up to 32% and warns against 30s-style protectionism” [WTO, 2020].
- Dr Li Wenliang, who lost his life to the novel coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2, became the face of the threat of SARS-CoV-2 to frontline workers, the clinicians taking care of patients. Li, 34, was an ophthalmologist at Wuhan Central Hospital. On 30th December, 2019, when the Wuhan municipal health service sent out an alert, he reportedly warned a closed group of ex-medical school classmates on the WeChat social media site of “Seven cases of severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) like illness with links with the Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market” at his hospital.