By Ushan de Mel
The WHO’s’ handling of the Coronavirus is their biggest failure to date. I will acknowledge WHO has done great things in the past, but when it comes to the Coronavirus and it’s dealing with China, with regards to the COVID19 virus, it failed the rest of the World. First, WHO downplayed the threat. Then it tried to cover up and then it delayed the response. There has been no transparency and no pro-activeness from the WHO and this allowed the virus to spread. The WHO is guilty of leaving the world in an unprepared state to deal with the spread and death of the Coronavirus.
On January 14th 2020 the WHO deliberately downplayed the human to human transmission of the virus. It said, “Preliminary investigations conducted by the Chinese Authorities have found no clear evidence of human-to-human transmission of the novel #coronavirus. The WHO spread these Chinese lies having known that 14 days earlier as confirmed in The Lancet that ” the epidemiological, clinical, laboratory, and radiological, characteristics, treatment, and clinical outcomes of 41 laboratory-confirmed cases infected with 2019 nCOV.27 (66%) of 41 patients had a history of direct exposure to the Huanan market.” So 14 (44%) of the infected had no link to the Huanan market meaning there was a clear case for human-to-human transmission. On January 1st, 2020, China’s own scientist confirmed this, when they reported to their own media, “The next confirmed case appeared on December 1st, 2019, but had no links to the Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market located in Wuhan.” In addition on the 13th January 2020, Taiwan reported its first imported case of lab-confirmed novel Coronavirus from Wuhan China. Taiwan repeatedly warned the WHO of human-to-human transmission, yet the WHO remained in denial when all the evidence pointed to this. On 12th January 2020, China shared the genetic sequence of COVID19 virus for countries to use to develop diagnostic kits. Why do this, unless the virus was transmitted by human to human transmission.
On 15th January 2020, the virus had trickled across borders and WHO did not declare a Pandemic, which at this stage is possibly acceptable. However, a month a half later this trickle had turned into a flood across multiple borders. By the end of February, there were cases of the virus in every Continent, but the WHO did not call it a Pandemic. It said the term “will not be appropriate yet”. On the 11th March, the WHO declared the Coronavirus a Pandemic, 57 days after the first cases were reported outside China. During these 57 days, 4000 people had died. This is more than 5 times the death toll of the SARS virus. Also, 118000 people had been infected. According to WHO on their own website, as of the 24th February 2020 ” a Pandemic is the worldwide spread of a new disease”. The Coronavirus at the end of February had spread to 80 countries across 6 Continents. Yet it did not fit the WHO’s own definition of a Pandemic. A declaration of a Pandemic is highly important because it makes Governments and Health Systems prepare for community transmission. A delay of any kind means increased infection and increased death rate.
On 28th January, “a senior WHO Delegation led by the Director-General Dr Tedros travelled to Beijing to meet China’s leadership, learn more about China’s response and offer technical assistance.” 131 people had died by then and there were 4600 cases across the world and the Hubei Provence was heading towards a lockdown. The WHO delegation Chief scientist, Dr Soumya Swaminathan after meeting with the Chinese leaders actually said, “It does look like at least it is not growing. It (the virus) is reducing. The number of cases outside China is not growing exponentially.” Also, no data was shared with the US Centre for Disease Control (CDC). This delegation stayed in Beijing for days. Yet they did not share any crucial data. So WHO’s delegation to China just further delayed the global response.
On the 11th February, there were coronavirus cases in the UK and the USA, and the WHO had still not declared a Pandemic. At this time the WHO was busy renaming the CORONAVIRUS, to ensure it did not mention China. It renamed the virus to COVID19, which stood for “Coronavirus Disease 2019″. The WHO stressed on the year, not the place of origin and that this was going to be the standard name for any new Coronavirus. Except they overlooked one thing, and that is COVID19 refers to the disease and the virus that causes the disease has been named SARS-COV2. But WHO refuses to use the name SARS ” as the name can have unintended consequences of fear especially in ASIA”, which was affected by SARS in 2003. So, basically WHO will not acknowledge the use of SARS or the use of Wuhan or China as part of this virus’ name and it failed by its own definition to correctly report a Pandemic was in progress.
Taiwan played a crucial role in notifying WHO about the Coronavirus outbreak in Wuhan in December 2019, but the WHO ignored Taiwan. Taiwan is not part of WHO in any way, shape or form, yet played a crucial role in notifying WHO of several instances of a virus outbreak in Wuhan in an official email last December. WHO deliberately chose to ignore Taiwan’s warnings. And they continue to ignore even Taiwan’s success in dealing with the Coronavirus at the behest of China.
In its attempts to not upset China, the WHO has failed to live up to its core mission and that is protecting human lives. It is time to demand accountability and ask questions. Trump has quite rightly suspended all funding to the WHO and other countries should follow suit, pending a full international independent Legal inquiry. The WHO is not going to survive in its current state and quite frankly it should not.
China’s culpability for the virus emerged as a key point of debate last week as President Trump repeatedly called COVID-19 “the Chinese virus” — in retaliation, he said, for a Chinese Governments Spokesman claim that the US government engineered the lethal respiratory bug. Whilst there is no evidence to suggest the coronavirus, which originated in Wuhan China was engineered in a lab — that does not exclude the possibility it escaped from the Wuhan Institute of Virology or another similar laboratory miles away in the Chinese city.
Fox News has said administration officials believe with “increasing confidence” that the outbreak was caused by an experiment in a Wuhan laboratory.
“The sources who spoke to Fox News said there was likely a “patient zero” who worked in the laboratory and was infected there, only to leave and spread it in the city’s population.”
One thing that’s clear, sources told the news channel, is that there is a concerted effort among Chinese officials to cover up any suggestion the virus somehow escaped from a lab.”