The World Health Organization WHO has warned against lifting the stay at home restriction order announced in some countries as part of measures to stem the spread of COVID-19.
Some state governors in Nigeria have been criticized for lifting the ban on public gatherings this weekend for Christians to celebrate Easter and for some mosques to congregate.
Speaking at a press conference on Friday Apri 10, the Director General of the World Health Organization, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, said this could lead to a deadly resurgence of the viral disease.
Taking Africa as an example, the WHO boss said
We’ve seen an alarming acceleration in other countries. I want to take a moment to highlight Africa, where we are seeing the spread of the #Coronavirus to rural areas. We are now seeing clusters of cases and community spread in more than 16 countries. We anticipate severe hardship for already overstretched health systems, particularly in rural areas, which normally lack the resources of those in cities.
I know that some countries are already planning the transition out of #StayHome restrictions. WHO wants to see restrictions lifted as much as anyone. At the same time, lifting restrictions too quickly could lead to a deadly resurgence. The way down can be as dangerous as the way up if not managed properly.
WHO is working with affected countries on strategies for gradually & safely easing restrictions. Imp. factors to consider are that:
1. transmission is controlled
2. sufficient public health & medical services are available
3. outbreak risks in spec settings are minimized.
4. preventive measures are in place in workplaces, schools & other essential places
5. importation risks can be managed
5. communities are fully aware and engaged in the transition” he said