Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) Director Dr. Carissa F. Etienne has warned against complacency amid a rollout of COVID-19 vaccines.
“Countries cannot get complacent, they should continue to promote the appropriate public health measures to control cases,” Etienne says.
She highlighted the need for wearing masks and observing social distancing.
“Patients will need to be tested, isolated, cared for, and we must continue to quarantine suspected cases. None of this can stop or we risk too many lives. I am concerned about all the work ahead — it won’t be easy nor quick,” the PAHO Director stated.
“While we hope 2021 will usher a new chapter in our fight against this virus, protecting the millions of people in our region with COVID-19 vaccines will be a huge undertaking,” she explained.
“We must be patient and remain realistic that COVID-19 will be among us for some time – so our work to control it cannot and must not stop,” Etienne declared.
The PAHO Director described the COVID-19 pandemic that began in 2020 as being ‘undoubtedly the most extraordinary public health event of our lifetimes.’
Headline photo caption: Carissa F. Etienne, Director of the Pan American Health Organisation