WHO advancing next series of studies to find origins of COVID-19
The World Health Organization said Thursday it has set up a new investigation team into the origins of COVID-19 after criticism from China that the study had been "politicized".
"Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, WHO has been working with Member States and the scientific community to better understand how this pandemic began so that we can be better prepared for the next one," the statement reads.
"Building on what has already been learned, the next series of studies would include a further examination of the raw data from the earliest cases and sera from potential early cases in 2019. Access to data is critically important for evolving our understanding of science and should not be politicised in any way," the statement added.
It was noted that WHO is working with a number of countries that have reported detection of SARS-CoV-2 in samples from stored biological specimens from 2019.
To move forward, WHO calls for all governments to depoliticize the situation and cooperate to accelerate the origins studies, and importantly to work together to develop a common framework for future emerging pathogens of pandemic potential.