The World Health Organization (WHO) declared a Coronavirus emergency on time, WHO Director-General Tedros Adhan Gebrejesus said on Wednesday.
“In retrospect, I think we have declared an emergency at the right time when the world had enough time to respond,” he said.
“We declared the highest level of emergency in the rest of the world (except China -) with only 82 cases and no deaths,” he said.
The WHO head explained that the decision to declare an emergency is made by a large number of experts who could not agree on a few days.
“The most important statement expected from WHO is that of an international emergency on 30 January. And it was based on the views of experts from around the world,” said Gebrejesus.
Following an emergency meeting, WHO declared the Coronavirus outbreak a public health emergency of international concern on 30 January. The head of the international organization said on 11 March that the coronavirus could be described as a pandemic.
WHO has repeatedly criticized U.S. authorities, accusing them of failing to respond to the coronavirus situation in a timely manner. U.S. President Donald Trump suggested that China and WHO may have withheld important information about the coronavirus, which led countries to misjudge the scale of the threat. The United States had previously suspended funding for WHO in April while investigating whether the international organization was functioning effectively.