The World Health Organisation (WHO) on February 5 has urged for $675 million (613 million euros) in donations in a bid to battle the deadly coronavirus, mainly through investment in countries considered to be at risk. WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said at a news conference held in Geneva that they are unveiling a strategic preparedness and response plan and are requesting $675 million to fund the plan for the next three months. He added that the WHO's message to the international community is invest today or pay more later.
To fight further spread of the #2019nCoV outbreak in #China & globally & protect vulnerable states with weak health systems, the intl community has launched a US$675 million preparedness & response plan covering the months of February through April 2020 https://t.co/OR6d4nVfBP pic.twitter.com/JMeqvfRyTz— World Health Organization (WHO) (@WHO) February 5, 2020
He further added that the appeal for the funds was "much less than the bill we will have to pay if we do not invest in preparedness now". He reportedly said that $60 million of the funds would be for WHO operations and the rest of the amount would go to the countries requiring help to guard against the deadly coronavirus. The death toll in China due to the deadly Coronavirus has touched 560, as per the latest government reports. The government reported more deaths on Thursday morning, leading to the crisis worsening. The Chinese government also reported that the number of people infected had crossed 28,000 across the country.
The outbreak took place in Wuhan in January and multiple countries have started evacuating their citizens from the country, and have decided to restrict the entry of foreigners returning from China. The World Health Organization (WHO) declared Coronavirus as a 'global public health emergency'. Amidst the growing crisis, WHO has repeatedly stated that it stands by China for its efforts to tackle the crisis.
Director-General of WHO, Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus recently stated, "Let me be clear: this declaration is not a vote of no confidence in China. On the contrary, WHO continues to have confidence in China’s capacity to control the outbreak..To the people of China & to all of those around the world who have been affected by this outbreak, we want you to know that the stands with you."
(with inputs from agencies)