Mike Ryan, chief emergency expert at the World Health Organization, said on Sunday that imposing isolation and locking down of towns and cities might not be sufficient to defeat the novel coronavirus, adding that there is a need for extra public health measure.
Ryan said in an interview with BBC that authorities should adopt other measures to ensure the virus would not re-emerge later after resuming normal social connections.
“What we really need is to find and locate patients and those who carry the virus, isolate them, and find those who mix and isolate them”.
The WHO official added: “If there are no strong public health measures now, then the risk is that the disease will return again when these restrictions on movement and the closure decisions are lifted.”
Many parts of Europe and the United States followed the Chinese measure and other Asian countries and imposed strict restrictions to curb the spread of the novel virus, as most people start working from their homes and schools and restaurants are closed.
Ryan said that China, Singapore and South Korea, which have taken strict measures to examine every person suspected of being infected, are role models for Europe that the organization said has replaced Asia and has become the epidemic center.
In a related context, Ryan pointed out that there are a number of vaccines undergoing examinations, but tests did not begin in the United States except for one vaccine.
“It will take at least a year to develop a coronavirus vaccine, but it will happen,” he said.
He warned that the “Covid-19” disease caused by the novel coronavirus does not affect the elderly only, stressing that “it has a major impact on the middle-age group as well.”