All COVID-19 virus variants respond to approved vaccines: WHO

WION Web Team
Geneva Published: May 20, 2021, 04:05 PM(IST)

A Buddhist monk is injected with the Sinovac vaccine at the Priest Hospital in Bangkok Photograph:( AFP )

Story highlights

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson had earlier expressed a similar opinion saying that his government had "increasing confidence that vaccinations are effective against all variants"

The World Health Organization's(WHO) European director Hans Kluge warned about a "rethink" on international travel while adding that despite the fragile COVID-19 situation authorised vaccines work against the virus variants.

Watch:

"All COVID-19 virus variants that have emerged so far do respond to the available, approved vaccines," Kluge said while asserting that social distancing norms should be continued to be followed.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson had earlier expressed a similar opinion saying that his government had "increasing confidence that vaccinations are effective against all variants" including the one first found in India while urging citizens to travel only to "amber" countries on the UK list.

Britain on Wednesday reported 2,696 COVID-19 cases and three deaths taking the total number of cases to 4.4 million including over 127, 690 deaths.

"Right now, in the face of a continued threat and new uncertainty, we need to continue to exercise caution and rethink or avoid international travel," WHO's European director said.

WHO's latest statement comes as Europe reopens for business and several British citizens recently vaccinated have decided to visit mainland Europe this summer.

"Vaccines may be a light at the end of the tunnel, but we cannot be blinded by that light," Kluge said.  

Meanwhile, the US which was the hardest hit due to the virus recorded seven-day moving average deaths at 545 on May 16 which was essentially the number when the pandemic began in the country in March last year.

The United States has recorded over 33 million cases and over 587,870 deaths which is the highest in the world. 

According to reports, 60 per cent of the US adult population has now been vaccinated including over 600,000 in the age group of 12-15 after the authorities allowed vaccination for teenagers.

Read in App