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WHO: We can't 'just pretend the pandemic is over'

WHO: We can't 'just pretend the pandemic is over'
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The World Health Organization (WHO) warned Monday that people can’t “pretend the pandemic is over” as countries lift restrictions put in place to mitigate the spread of the coronavirus. 

WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus warned that countries should not reopen economies if they don’t have control over the virus. 

"The more control countries have over the virus, the more they can open up. Opening up without having control is a recipe for disaster," he said during a virtual briefing. "No country can just pretend the pandemic is over."

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He also reportedly said countries should prevent deaths by protecting vulnerable people, including older people, people with underlying conditions and essential workers, which he said helps alleviate burden on health systems and saves lives. 

"If countries are serious about opening up, they must be serious about suppressing transmission and saving lives," he said. "This may seem like an impossible balance, but it's not. It can be done and it has been done."

The coronavirus has infected more than 25 million people and killed 848,000 globally, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University. The U.S. has reported the most cases, more than 6 million, and most deaths, at more than 183,4888. 

States across the U.S. have reopened to varying degrees. There are no national coronavirus restrictions in place across the U.S.