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15 April 2020updated 06 Oct 2020 9:45am

WHO and EU urge caution for countries easing lockdown measures

By Samuel Horti

Both the World Health Organisation (WHO) and the European Union have urged countries lifting coronavirus lockdown measures to do so gradually, with the WHO recommending a “step-wise” approach that leaves two weeks between the easing of different restrictions.

This two-week period would “allow sufficient time to understand the risk of new outbreaks and to respond appropriately”, the WHO said, as it warned the “risk of re-introduction and resurgence of the disease will continue”.

EU Commission president Ursula von der Leyen said today that countries should only ease restrictions if they had a significant drop in infections, sufficient capacity in their healthcare system, and robust monitoring capability. “In general, we recommend a gradual approach and every action should be continuously monitored,” she said.

The advice comes after a number of countries hardest hit by coronavirus, including Italy and Spain, began lifting restrictions.

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