The WHO Director-General has the pleasure of transmitting the Report of the twelfth meeting of the International Health Regulations (2005) (IHR) Emergency Committee regarding the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, held on Friday, 8 July 2022, from
12:00 to 15:30 CEST.
The WHO Director-General concurs with the advice offered by the Committee regarding the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and determines that the event continues to constitute a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC).
The WHO Director-General considered the advice provided by the Committee regarding the proposed Temporary Recommendations. The set of Temporary Recommendations issued by the WHO Director-General is presented at the end of this statement.
The WHO Director-General is taking the opportunity to express his sincere gratitude to the Chair, and Members of the Committee, as well as to its Advisors.
Proceedings of the meeting
On behalf of the WHO Director-General, the Executive Director of the WHO Health Emergencies Programme, Dr Michael J. Ryan, welcomed Members and Advisors of the Emergency Committee, all of whom were convened by videoconference.
Dr Ryan expressed concern regarding the current global COVID-19 epidemiological situation. Cases of COVID-19 reported to WHO had increased by 30% in the last two weeks, largely driven by Omicron BA.4, BA.5 and other descendent lineages and the lifting
of public health and social measures (PHSM). This increase in cases was translating into pressure on health systems in a number of WHO regions. Dr Ryan highlighted additional challenges to the ongoing COVID-19 response: recent changes in testing policies
that hinder the detection of cases and the monitoring of virus evolution; inequities in access to testing, sequencing, vaccines and therapeutics, including new antivirals; waning of natural and vaccine-derived protection; and the global burden of
Post COVID-19 condition.
The Ethics Officer from the Department of Compliance, Risk Management, and Ethics briefed Members and Advisers on their roles and responsibilities. Members and Advisors were also reminded of their duty of confidentiality as to the meeting discussions
and the work of the Committee, as well as their individual responsibility to disclose to WHO, in a timely manner, any interests of a personal, professional, financial, intellectual or commercial nature that may give rise to a perceived or direct conflict
of interest. Each Member and Advisor who was present was surveyed. No conflicts of interest were identified.
The Representative of the Office of Legal Counsel briefed the Members and Advisors on their roles and responsibilities and