WHO corrects advice against Travel for Over-60s

The World Health Organization has issued a correction to a travel advisory released on Tuesday which initially stated those unwell or aged over 60 should avoid travel to areas with community transmission of Covid.

The UN agency subsequently corrected the advisory to confirm it applied to those who were vulnerable or not fully-vaccinated, bringing it in line with advice that has been in place since July.

The advice applies to those aged over 60 and with conditions including cancer, heart disease and diabetes, and has been reiterated following concern over the emergence of the Omicron variant.

The WHO also used the advisory to reiterate opposition to blanket travel bans, adding to criticism from those who feel countries in Southern Africa have been unfairly penalised for first identifying the strain.

The statement said: “Blanket travel bans will not prevent the international spread, and they place a heavy burden on lives and livelihoods. In addition, they can adversely impact global health efforts during a pandemic by disincentivising countries to report and share epidemiological and sequencing data.

“All countries should ensure that the measures are regularly reviewed and updated when new evidence becomes available on the epidemiological and clinical characteristics of Omicron or any other VOC (variant of concern).”

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