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World experts and funders set priorities for COVID-19 research as death toll, new infection slows to less 100 on Wednesday

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Medical workers cheer for each other before setting off for Wuhan in Hubei Province, in Zhengzhou, central China's Henan Province. Xinhua

The World Health Organisation (WHO) has said the COVID-19 outbreak is a test of solidarity — political, financial and scientific.

“We need to come together to fight a common enemy that does not respect borders, ensure that we have the resources necessary to bring this outbreak to an end and bring our best science to the forefront to find shared answers to shared problems. Research is an integral part of the outbreak response,” said WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.

“I appreciate the positive response of the research community to join us at short notice and come up with concrete plans and commitment to work together.

He said this as leading health experts from around the world have been meeting at the World Health Organization’s Geneva headquarters to assess the current level of knowledge about the new COVID-19 disease, identify gaps and work together to accelerate and fund priority research needed to help stop this outbreak and prepare for any future outbreaks. Or

The 2-day forum was convened in line with the WHO R&D Blueprint – a strategy for developing drugs and vaccines before epidemics, and accelerating research and development while they are occurring.

he meeting, hosted in collaboration with GloPID-R (the Global Research Collaboration for Infectious Disease Preparedness) brought together major research funders and over 300 scientists and researchers from a large variety of disciplines. They discussed all aspects of the outbreak and ways to control it.

Meanwhile probably for the first time the novel coronavirus was detected in China, Hubei registered no deaths and the death toll was low single digit figure of three in China..

The rate of infection has also drastically slowed down to 45,222 or just 52 new cases in the past 24 hours with 4,888 recovered recorded during the first period.

China too recorded the fewest new cases with 46 while Japan, Hong Kong and Singapore and United Kingdom recorded new cases at one, one,, three and one case respectively.

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