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We learned from the report that... if you look at the trends in influenza-like illness, in excess mortality, it's clear that there was circulation of this virus earlier, that there was likely widespread circulation in December. That's really, really important, the area of work in the report that wasn't covered in detail was the lab, and the lab audit, and the lab hypothesis.
In the context of virus variants, increased social mobility, social mixing, inappropriate use of public health and social measures and inequitable vaccine distribution, we’re in a very dangerous situation, it’s becoming more and more challenging and we’re moving further away from the end of this pandemic than we should be at this point in time.
This is a respiratory pathogen and so it is important that what we know fits into the guidance that we have, which is why a comprehensive package of interventions are required to be able to stop transmission, this includes not only physical distancing. It includes the use of masks where appropriate in certain settings, specifically where you can't do physical distancing, and especially for health care workers.
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, 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.
As you know this is a virus that is transmitted through droplets and these are little pieces of liquid, when they come out of an infected person and individual, they go a certain distance and then they settle... in that situation, in health care facilities, it's very important that health care workers take additional precaution.
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