New York (UNA-OIC) – The continuing COVID-19 pandemic continues to top a long list of global concerns, UN Secretary-General António Guterres told journalists on Wednesday, noting that “the grimmest of milestones” is upon us.
“The outbreak remains out of control,” Guterres declared in his press conference ahead of the High-Level Week of the 75th session of the UN General Assembly, noting that soon one million lives will be “lost to the virus”.
Recognizing that many pin their hopes on a vaccine, he said, “let’s be clear: there is no panacea in a pandemic.”
“A vaccine alone cannot solve this crisis, certainly not in the near term,” the UN chief. “We need to massively expand new and existing tools that can respond to new cases and provide vital treatment to suppress transmission and save lives, especially over the next 12 months.”
He emphasized that because the virus “respects no borders”, a vaccine must be seen as “a global public good”, affordable and available to all, but it requires “a quantum leap in funding”.