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WHO: Novel Coronavirus Outbreak Not Yet a "Pandemic"

At a press briefing held on 4 February, WHO announced the launch of an Information Network for Epidemics to help businesses, media and the public access epidemic-related information. During the briefing, Dr. Sylvie Briand, Director of WHO's Infectious Hazard Management Department, said the novel coronavirus outbreak is currently not a "pandemic".

Dr. Briand noted that the Chinese government has taken forceful measures to cut off the spread of the virus. The top priority at this stage is "early case detection and early isolation".

WHO research shows that the novel coronavirus is mainly transmitted through respiratory droplets and close contact. WHO is yet to identify any anti-viral drug that has been proven effective. Dr. Briand also pointed out there is no evidence that the virus has mutated.

WHO appeals to the international community to respect science, reject misinformation, and step up containment, mitigation and treatment efforts.

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