The world is at the beginning of a new wave of pandemic coronavirus. This was announced by the Director General of the World Health Organization (WHO) Tedros Adanom Gebreyesus on July 14.
“We are now in the early stages of the third wave,” he said during his remarks to the WHO emergency committee on COVID-19 in Geneva.
Gebreyesus drew attention to the high rates of global morbidity, as well as deaths from coronavirus infection. He noted that the number of fatalities increased for the first time after declining for the previous 10 weeks.
The Indian variant of the Delta coronavirus is a major factor in the rise in transmission rates, he said, “fueled by increased social contact and mobility, as well as inconsistent application of proven health and social measures.”
The WHO director general stressed that the Indian strain has been reported in more than 111 countries, so WHO expects that “it will soon become the dominant strain circulating in the world, if it hasn’t already.”
Earlier, on July 7, Dr. Jean-Luc Gala, professor of immunology at UCLouvain University in Belgium, warned that Europe would not be able to avoid a fourth wave of COVID-19, which will probably come as early as fall. According to him, the new outbreak will not be as severe as the previous ones. At present, however, the number of new cases is increasing because of the spread of Indian strains Delta and Delta Plus, against which existing vaccines are less effective.
On July 6, Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Costa announced that the country was in the fourth wave of the pandemic.
On the same day, Slovenian Prime Minister Janez Janša said that EU countries need to prepare for a potential fourth wave of the coronavirus and prevent it if possible.