There are still several virus hot spots around the world causing concern, said a top World Health Organization official on CNN’s Global Town Hall earlier tonight.
The WHO is keeping a close eye on very large increases in case numbers in Russia, Africa, the Americas, some countries in South Asia and a few countries in Europe, said Maria Van Kerkhove, technical lead for the WHO’s coronavirus response.
“These are areas that we are concerned about because, as we know, as you know, when this virus has an opportunity to really take hold it can grow very, very quickly,” Van Kerkhove said. “Any one of these could really take hold and take off very, very quickly and we have seen how this virus affects vulnerable populations, and that’s a big worry of ours.”
She said she hopes a vaccine could be deployable by the end of the year -- but that’s if everything goes right. Scientists are working around the clock on more than 100 vaccine candidates, she said, but the accelerated schedule cannot compromise on safety or efficacy.