World Health Organization declares COVID-19 outbreak a pandemic.
The UN agency said there is a “lack of resilience” in the public health systems of some countries as it called for better tracing of those who have come into contact with infected cases.
But the head of the WHO said it is not too late for nations to act – and all countries can still change the course of the pandemic if they detect, test, treat, isolate, trace and mobilize their people.
The organization said Italy and Iran were now in the frontline of the disease – which started in China late last year – and other countries would soon join them.
There have been more than 121,500 confirmed cases of COVID-19, the prevalent strain of coronavirus, in at least 114 nations.
The latest figures on how many people around the world have caught the disease
More than 4,300 people have died, including over 3,000 in China, the epicenter of the outbreak.
Outside China, there has been a 13-fold rise in the number of infections and a tripling of the countries affected in the last two weeks.
— World Health Organization (WHO) (@WHO) March 11, 2020