The World Health Organization (WHO) has warned that the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) disease pandemic is “accelerating”.
WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said urged the countries to adopt rigorous testing and contact-tracing strategies to win against the disease.
“The COVID-19 pandemic is accelerating. It took 67 days from the 1st reported case to reach the first 100,000 cases, 11 days for the second 100,000 cases and just 4 days for the third 100,000 cases. These numbers matter, these are people, whose lives and families have been turned upside down,” said Ghebreyesus.
He added, “To win, we need to attack the coronavirus with aggressive and targeted tactics – testing every suspected COVID-19 case, isolating and caring for every confirmed case, and tracing and quarantining every close contact.”
Ghebreyesus said that physical distancing measures are not enough to stop the spread of coronavirus.
“Asking people to stay at home and other physical distancing measures are an important way to slow down the spread of the COVId-19 and buy time, but they are defensive measures that won’t help us to win,” he said at a press briefing.
“What matters most is what we do. You can’t win a football game by defending. You have to attack as well,” he told a joint news conference with Fifa president Gianni Infantino to launch a “kick out coronavirus” campaign featuring footballers.
FIFA, the international governing body of football, and the WHO have teamed up to combat the coronavirus by launching a new awareness campaign led by world-renowned footballers, who are calling on all people around the world to follow five key steps to stop the spread of the disease.
The ‘Pass the message to kick out coronavirus’ campaign promotes five key steps for people to follow to protect their health in line with WHO guidance, focused on handwashing, coughing etiquette, not touching your face, physical distance and staying home if feeling unwell.
Twenty-eight players are involved in the video campaign, which is being published in 13 languages.
Sami Al Jaber (KSA), Alisson Becker (BRA), Emre Belözoğlu (TUR), Jared Borgetti (MEX), Gianluigi Buffon (ITA), Iker Casillas (ESP), Sunil Chhetri (IND), Youri Djorkaeff (FRA), Han Duan (CHN), Samuel Eto’o (CMR), Radamel Falcao (COL), Laura Georges (FRA), Valeri Karpin (RUS), Miroslav Klose (GER), Philipp Lahm (GER), Gary Lineker (ENG), Carli Lloyd (USA), Lionel Messi (ARG), Mido (EGY), Michael Owen (ENG), Park Ji-sung (KOR) , Carles Puyol (ESP), Célia Šašić (GER), Asako Takakura (JPN), Yaya Touré (CIV), Juan Sebastián Verón (ARG), Sun Wen (CHN) and Xavi Hernández (ESP).