The Covid pandemic has killed one million people worldwide since January, the WHO said on Thursday, urging governments to speed up vaccinations when a third of the world’s population is unvaccinated.
“We have passed the tragic milestone of one million Covid-19 deaths since the beginning of the year,” World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told the conference.
He called on governments of all countries to redouble their efforts to vaccinate all health workers, the elderly and other people most at risk, in order to achieve 70% vaccination coverage of the entire population.
In January this year, WHO, the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and their partners launched the Covid Vaccine Delivery Partnership (CoVDP) to facilitate dose distribution in 34 countries with less than 10% vaccination coverage. all but six are in Africa.
Now, said Dr. Tedros, only 10 countries have less than 10% coverage.
“However, there is still much to be done,” he said.
A third of the world’s population is still unvaccinated, including two-thirds of medical staff and three-quarters of older people in low-income countries, according to the WHO chief.
According to the latest WHO statistics, the Covid-19 pandemic has caused 6.45 million deaths worldwide since the first cases appeared in Wuhan, China, in late 2019.