WHO chief praises Dharavi for controlling Covid-19 spread

World Health Organisation (WHO) has lauded the efforts put in to break the chain of the novel coronavirus in the densely packed area in the megacity of Mumbai, Dharavi, among other countries.

Even as the overall coronavirus cases in India crossed the 8 lakh mark on Friday, the recovery rate of the country is at around 63 per cent. A huge bonus for that have been the effective measures taken to contain the outbreak in critical points across the country, especially in densely-populated pockets, such as slums and resettlement colonies.

One such case has been that of Dharavi, Asia’s largest slum, which is home to more than 10 lakh people. The efforts of the Maharashtra government and the Centre to contain the pandemic in the area has drawn praises from even the World Health Organisation, with the chief of the global health watchdog citing that as an example of how the virus can be brought under control.

Stating Italy, Spain and South Korea, and even in Dharavi as examples, WHO Chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said that however “intense” the outbreak was in some countries, the coronavirus could still be chased through aggressive action. He also said that it is still possible to bring coronavirus outbreaks under control, even though the number of cases has more than doubled in the past six weeks.

“In the last six weeks cases have more than doubled,” Tedros told a virtual press conference in Geneva. However, “there are many examples from around the world that have shown that even if the outbreak is very intense, it can still be brought back under control,” said Tedros.

“Some of these examples are Italy, Spain and South Korea, and even in Dharavi – a densely packed area in the megacity of Mumbai – a strong focus on community engagement and the basics of testing, tracing, isolating and treating all those that are sick is key to breaking the chains of transmission and suppressing the virus,” Tedros said.

“Today the world recorded 12 million cases. In the last six weeks cases have more than doubled. (But) there are many examples from around the world that have shown that even if the outbreak is very intense, it can still be brought back under control. And some of these examples are Italy, Spain and South Korea, and even in Dharavi – a densely packed area in the megacity of Mumbai – a strong focus on community engagement and the basics of testing, tracing, isolating and treating all those that are sick is key to breaking the chains of transmission and suppressing the virus,” WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said