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Indefinite closures could severely damage major economies, says WHO

World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus Source: Getty Images

The World Health Organisation is warning nations over their border policies during the pandemic, fearing indefinite closures could severely damage major economies. There is growing pressure on individual countries to curb their own COVID-19 infections, but some are struggling with the task.

The United States has been hardest-hit in the pandemic, with fatal cases climbing toward 150 thousand people. More than four million people have been infected with the new coronavirus, the largest number in the world, with a recent surge in southern states including California and Florida.

US President Donald Trump has been criticised for his response to the new coronavirus, and was wearing a mask for only the second time in public, after scorning the practice in the earlier months of the pandemic.

We need all Americans to be conscious about their actions and to exercise extreme vigilance. I trust all Americans to do the right thing. But we strongly advise everyone to especially, especially focus on maintaining a social distance, maintaining rigorous hygiene, avoid large gatherings and crowded into our bars and wear masks when appropriate. We also strongly urge citizens to take extra precautions to shield those at highest risk.

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People in Australia must stay at least 1.5 metres away from others. Find out what restrictions are in place for your state or territory.

Testing for coronavirus is now widely available across Australia. If you are experiencing cold or flu symptoms, arrange a test by calling your doctor or contact the Coronavirus Health Information Hotline on 1800 020 080.

The federal government's coronavirus tracing app COVIDSafe is available for download from your phone's app store.

SBS is committed to informing Australia’s diverse communities about the latest COVID-19 developments. News and information is available in 63 languages at http://www.sbs.com.au/coronavirus

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