The World Health Organization (WHO) has been publicly praising China for its response to coronavirus, but it would seem that things have been quite different once we go behind the scenes. It has been brought to light that the WHO officials were more than frustrated with how China tackled the whole outbreak.
AP has claimed that the WHO reported that China caused a delay in releasing the genetic map of the virus for more than seven days after three government labs had completely managed to decode the data. China also stalled for two weeks regarding making sure that the organization was provided with information about cases and patients.
This brings us to a more important question; why did the WHO publicly praise China if this is how the country conducted herself? AP says that this was done to get more information out of the Chinese officials. American epidemiologist Maria Van Kerkhove who is the technical lead of the WHO for COVID-19 said in a meeting as per the AP, ‘We’re going on very minimal information. It’s clearly not enough for you to do proper planning.’
This is quite a trying time for the WHO since the UN agency has recently agreed to undergo an independent probe regarding how the coronavirus was handled publicly. Simultaneously, it is also facing the danger of losing the backing of its largest donor: the USA. US President Donald Trump has become very critical of the WHO in the last several weeks and even accused the organization of conspiring with China about keeping the extent of the coronavirus situation from the world.
Donald Trump hasn’t just stopped at the allegations. The US President as effectively cut all ties with the WHO and has put the $450 million annual funding that it provides the WHO at risk. Let’s see how the agency handles the tough times that are lying ahead of it.