- WHO’s safety call
The World Health Organization urged families to wear face masks at this year’s Christmas family gatherings, as it warned of a “further resurgence” of Covid-19 in early 2021. The UN agency said people are saying “the importance of your decisions” and additional precaution encouraged for holiday gatherings, even within the family.
- COVID protocols
Whenever possible, WHO said that celebrations should be held outdoors and “participants should wear masks and keep physical distance.” For indoor parties, the WHO said limiting the number of guests and ensuring good ventilation were key to reducing the risk of infection. “It may feel uncomfortable to wear masks and exercise physical distance around friends and family, but this contributes significantly to keeping everyone safe and healthy,” the health department said in a statement.
- WHO’s advice
The plea came when the agency noted that “the transmission of Covid-19 in the European region remains widespread and intense”, even though there had been some “fragile progress”.
- Increasing cases
The WHO European region includes 53 countries, including Russia and several countries in Central Asia, a region with more than 22 million cases of the novel coronavirus and nearly 500,000 deaths. Nearly 1.7 million new cases have been registered in the past seven days, as well as more than 34,500 deaths.
- Second wave of COVID
As a second wave of the new coronavirus engulfs the continent, many countries have again taken tough measures to stop the spread. Several new measures were imposed on Wednesday, including