NEW YORK (March 11, 2020) – “Characterizing COVID-19 as a pandemic is not an indication that the virus has become deadlier. Rather, it is an acknowledgement of the disease’s geographical spread.
“UNICEF has been preparing and responding to the epidemic of COVID-19 around the world, knowing that the virus could spread to children and families in any country or community.
“We will continue working with governments and our partners to stop transmission of the virus, and to keep children and their families safe.
“At the same time, we remain very concerned by the secondary impacts of the outbreak and related control measures on children, including school closures, the burden on local health systems for the delivery of primary care, protection risks and economic pressures felt by some families.
“Fear of the virus is also contributing to discrimination against people from vulnerable groups, including refugees and migrants – this is unacceptable.
“We remain on the ground working in affected communities to mitigate secondary impacts for children and push pack against stigmatization.”
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The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) works in more than 190 countries and territories to put children first. UNICEF has helped save more children’s lives than any other humanitarian organization, by providing health care and immunizations, safe water and sanitation, nutrition, education, emergency relief and more. UNICEF USA supports UNICEF’s work through fundraising, advocacy and education in the United States. Together, we are working toward the day when no children die from preventable causes and every child has a safe and healthy childhood. For more information, visit www.unicefusa.org.