Chinese medical expert predicts pandemic to last until year's end or early 2021

Worldwide coronavirus infections sure to resurge in autumn: Chinese infectious disease specialist

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Chinese epidemiologist Zhang Wenhong believes pandemic will last until end of 2020 or start of 2021. 

Chinese epidemiologist Zhang Wenhong believes pandemic will last until end of 2020 or start of 2021.  (AP photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Renowned Chinese epidemiologist Zhang Wenhong (張文宏) said Saturday (June 20) that the coronavirus pandemic is likely to last until at least the end of 2020 or the beginning of 2021, and he warned that a resurgence of the disease in the fall is inevitable.

As a new coronavirus outbreak explodes in Beijing, members of the global community have begun to wonder when the international crisis will end. As of Sunday afternoon (June 21), more than 8.8 million individuals worldwide have contracted the virus, including approximately 465,000 who have succumbed to the disease.

In an article he posted to his Weibo account Saturday, Zhang pointed out that total infection numbers around the world would reach the 10 million mark before July and that the key tangible solution to the pandemic is a preventive vaccine. He stressed that many countries have restarted domestic businesses in fear of financial collapse but warned that doing so would introduce an element of uncertainty into the mix.

Regardless of how soon a vaccine is developed, Zhang said the pandemic would linger until the end of this year at the earliest and possibly through the first half of next year. He added that an eventual vaccine should first be made accessible to at-risk individuals, such as the elderly and those who suffer from chronic illnesses, reported New Talk.

In an interview with China Central Television (CCTV) earlier this month, Zhang also warned that a global resurgence of the coronavirus is bound to happen in the fall. However, he noted that protective equipment and proper preventive measures could effectively contain its spread and that the global community should not be alarmed, reported UDN.