Union health minister Harsh Vardhan, during a virtual address at the 148th session of WHO Executive Board on Tuesday, said the world was on the verge of defeating the coronavirus pandemic. He attributed the success to "preemptive, proactive and collaborative" efforts taken by countries affected by the global pandemic.
He said despite wide disparity in epidemiological trends estimated by countries, the world is close to defeating the pandemic.
He said governments, business and philanthropic organisations got together to start committing resources. "The year 2020 was the year of science when the best of humanity was shown through the gloom that descended due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The situation demanded setting up of major global collaboration so that scientists could share their expertise," he said during the virtual address.
He said all states in India are doing everything they can to contain the virus but efforts need to be redoubled. He said the government worked immensely towards improving accessibility, affordability and quality of healthcare services as it fought against the deadly virus.
He added that WHO has ensured that all low and middle income countries get access to safe and effective Covid-19 testing kits and vaccines.
Vardhan said even after the pandemic is over, there will be many challenges, for which the organisations like the WHO need to come up with a new vision.
Meanwhile, the global coronavirus tally surpassed the 100 million mark on Wednesday, the Johns Hopkins University data suggests. The United States is still the worst affected country with 25,407,414 cases, followed by India.
Total cases in India stands at 1,06,89,527. India reported 12,689 new COVID-19 cases on Wednesday, while 13,320 patients cured and 137 deaths in the last 24 hours, says the health ministry data. The active case tally stands at 1,76,498. The country has reported 1,03,59,305 recoveries and 1,53,724 deaths so far.