WHO chief: Coronavirus vaccine could be ready in 18 months

The WHO asked countries to be "as aggressive as possible" in fighting the newly named COVID-19 coronavirus.

Newly elected Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO) Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus attends a news conference at the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland (photo credit: REUTERS)
Newly elected Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO) Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus attends a news conference at the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland
(photo credit: REUTERS)
The first vaccine targeting China's coronavirus could be available in 18 months, "so we have to do everything today using available weapons," World Health Organization chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said in Geneva on Tuesday.
He said the virus had been named COVID-19, explaining that it was important to avoid stigma and that other names could be inaccurate.
Ghebreyesus urged nations around the world to unite in an effort to combat the virus and avoid "far more cases and far higher costs."
The WHO asked countries to be "as aggressive as possible" in fighting the newly named COVID-19 coronavirus.
"If the world doesn't want to wake up and consider the virus as public enemy number one, I don't think we will will learn from our lessons," Ghebreyesus said.
"We are still in containment strategy and should not allow the virus to have a space to have local transmission."