Jan. 5, 2021

WHO Director-General's opening remarks at the media briefing on COVID-19 – 5 January 2021

5 January 2021

Summary:

We’re in a race to prevent infections, bring cases down, protect health systems and safe lives while rolling out highly effective and safe vaccines to high-risk populations. This is not easy. But if we act together we can win both races and get ahead of the virus while also limiting the opportunity for the virus to mutate further and threaten the health tools we currently have.

Following the Emergency Use Listing last week, the SAGE group met today to discuss policy recommendations for the use of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine.

Over the past 24 hours, members of the international scientific team on COVID-19 virus origins began traveling from their home countries to China. Today we learned that Chinese officials have not yet finalised the necessary permissions for the team’s arrival in China. We are eager to get the mission underway .