Now is not time to relax pandemic efforts, says WHO

FILE PHOTO: People receive the first dose of Sinovac's CoronaVac coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccine for senior citizens, in Duque de Caxias, Rio de Janeiro state, Brazil March 5, 2021. REUTERS/Pilar Olivares

GENEVA (Reuters) - The arrival of COVID-19 vaccines should not tempt countries to relax efforts to fight the coronavirus pandemic, top World Health Organization officials said on Friday, citing particular concern about the situation in Brazil.

“We think we’re through this. We’re not,” Mike Ryan, WHO’s top emergency expert, told an online briefing. “Countries are going to lurch into third and fourth surges if we’re not careful.”

Reporting by Stephanie Nebehay and Emma Farge, Writing by Michael Shields