World Health Organization Officially Calls Coronavirus a 'Pandemic'


The World Health Organization declared the coronavirus outbreak a “pandemic” on Wednesday, saying it now meets the United Nations organization’s definition.

“WHO has been assessing this outbreak around the clock and we are deeply concerned both by the alarming levels of spread and severity, and by the alarming levels of inaction,” Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO’s director-general, said at a news conference in Geneva.

WHO defines a pandemic as “the world spread of a new disease.”

“Pandemic is not a word to use lightly or carelessly,” Ghebreyesus said. “It is a word that, if misused, can cause unreasonable fear, or unjustified acceptance that the fight is over, leading to unnecessary suffering and death”

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The New York Times reported Wednesday that more than 124,000 people in 108 countries have been sickened by COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus.

At least 4,575 people have died, though all but 1,413 deaths occurred in mainland China, where the disease originated.

Ghebreyesus explained classifying the coronavirus as a pandemic “does not change WHO’s assessment of the threat posed by this coronavirus. It doesn’t change what WHO is doing, and it doesn’t change what countries should do.”

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“We cannot say this loudly enough, or clearly enough, or often enough: all countries can still change the course of this pandemic,” Ghebreyesus said.

According to The Times, approximately 1,100 people in the U.S. have tested positive for the coronavirus in 40 states. At least 31 deaths have been linked to the illness.

Vice President Mike Pence announced Tuesday the nation’s largest health insurance companies have agreed to waive all co-payments for coronavirus testing and treatment.

“I’m pleased to report, as you requested, Mr. President, that all the insurance companies here either today or before today have agreed to waive all co-pays on coronavirus testing and extend coverage for coronavirus treatment in their benefit plans,” he said.

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“We want people to get tested,” Pence added.

At a briefing of the coronavirus task force Tuesday evening, the vice president said, “President Trump said from early on that this would be a whole-of-government approach.”

“We’re bringing the full resources of the federal government and the full resources of — of this great economy and our great business sector to bear in protecting the American people and protecting American families.”

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Randy DeSoto has written more than 2,000 articles for The Western Journal since he joined the company in 2015. He is a graduate of West Point and Regent University School of Law. He is the author of the book "We Hold These Truths" and screenwriter of the political documentary "I Want Your Money."
Randy DeSoto is the senior staff writer for The Western Journal. He wrote and was the assistant producer of the documentary film "I Want Your Money" about the perils of Big Government, comparing the presidencies of Ronald Reagan and Barack Obama. Randy is the author of the book "We Hold These Truths," which addresses how leaders have appealed to beliefs found in the Declaration of Independence at defining moments in our nation's history. He has been published in several political sites and newspapers.

Randy graduated from the United States Military Academy at West Point with a BS in political science and Regent University School of Law with a juris doctorate.
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
Graduated dean's list from West Point
United States Military Academy at West Point, Regent University School of Law
Books Written
We Hold These Truths
Professional Memberships
Virginia and Pennsylvania state bars
Phoenix, Arizona
Languages Spoken
Topics of Expertise
Politics, Entertainment, Faith