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The end of the COVID-19 pandemic is approaching, the World Health Organization said this week, as reported deaths dropped to the lowest number since March 2020.
"We have never been in a better position to end the pandemic," Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, director-general of the World Health Organization, said in a news briefing in Geneva on Wednesday. "We're not there yet, but the end is in sight."
He said this could be a turning point but cautioned against easing prevention efforts.
Tedros compared the effort to that made by a runner approaching the end of a marathon.
"Now is the worst time to stop running," he said. "Now is the time to run harder and make sure we cross the line and reap all the rewards of our hard work."
Deaths fell by 22% in the past week to just more than 11,000 around the world, the United Nations health agency said. New cases fell by 28%, continuing a decline in recent weeks in each part of the world.
CNN said that the United States reported the highest number of weekly deaths, followed by Japan, Russia, Brazil, and the Philippines.
Case counts remain underreported in some countries.
"The agency issued a set of policy briefs for governments to strengthen their efforts against the coronavirus ahead of the expected winter surge of COVID-19, warning that new variants could yet undo the progress made to date," the Associated Press reported.
"There is still a risk of more variants, deaths, disruption and uncertainty, so let's seize this opportunity," Tedros said.
World Health Organization: "Media briefing on COVID-19 and other global health issues."
Associated Press: "WHO: COVID end 'in sight,' deaths at lowest since March 2020."
CNN: "End of Covid-19 pandemic is in sight, WHO director-general says, 'so let's seize this opportunity.'"
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Cite this: 'End Is in Sight' for COVID-19 Pandemic, WHO Chief Says - Medscape - Sep 16, 2022.