He acknowledged that "pandemic fatigue" was real, but should not deter leaders from fighting the virus while balancing the disruption to lives and livelihoods.
His comments come a day after White House chief of staff Mark Meadows told CNN the Trump administration was prioritizing mitigation measures, like therapies and vaccines, over efforts to contain Covid-19.
But Tedros said countries can do both, pointing to European nations that have managed to contain the virus and minimize deaths. "When leaders act quickly and deliberately, the virus can be suppressed," he said, adding that if we don't all play our part, lockdowns would be unavoidable.
Many leaders across Europe are now facing the prospect of reimposing lockdowns, as countries that had gotten a handle on the virus (like Italy) or initially avoided an outbreak entirely (like the Czech Republic) now grapple with a surge in new cases. But people exhausted by months of social distancing measures are not as amenable to curfews and closures a second time around. In the clearest sign of that exasperation, hundreds of people turned out in Italian cities overnight to protest the latest restrictions.
YOU ASKED. WE ANSWERED
Q: How can we do Halloween safely during Covid-19?
A: There are many ways you can still have fun, CNN Medical Analyst Dr. Leana S. Wen says. The safest thing to do is to get together with a small group of no more than 10 people outdoors. Of course, anything virtual is safe — like Zoom costume contests. Decorating and carving pumpkins, having scary movie nights with your family or visiting outdoor attractions like corn mazes and pumpkin patches if they're not too crowded, are other safe options.
If your kids are really intent on trick-or-treating, you can check in with your neighbors and see if everyone can agree to some ways to make it safer -- for example, spread out candy in front yards, or individually bag up all treats. When going door to door, kids can go with their immediate households and stay spaced apart from other families. Don't knock on the door or go inside. If you live in an apartment block, you could consider organizing an event at a local park with neighbors where everyone is spaced apart.
Send your questions here. Are you a health care worker fighting Covid-19? Message us on WhatsApp about the challenges you're facing: +1 347-322-0415.
WHAT'S IMPORTANT TODAY
With US election day just a week away, Covid-19 cases are surging
In just one week, the fall surge in Covid-19 infections added nearly half a million cases to the national total. Some local and state officials have had to rein in their reopening plans, as hospitalization numbers increase and states report case records. Health experts have warned that the current surge, built off the back of already high case counts, could be worse than any the US has seen before.
The situation in El Paso, Texas, is a sign of what might lie ahead. The situation has gotten so bad there that a local children's hospital is taking in patients and overwhelmed officials have taken the drastic action of imposing a two-week stay-at-home order and nightly curfew.
Second wave fears weigh on markets
US stocks fell sharply on Monday, with fears about rising infections across the US and Europe unleashing fresh anxiety about the trajectory of the pandemic. While investors continue to set their sights on a vaccine, new restrictions have the potential to halt the nascent economic recovery. Hopes that US politicians can agree on another stimulus package before next week's election are also fading, sparking a more dour mood on Wall Street, Julia Horowitz writes.
British study shows evidence of waning immunity to Covid-19
Immunity to the coronavirus is gradually wearing off -- at least according to one measure -- according to a study of hundreds of thousands of people across England published by Imperial College London on Monday. Researchers who sent out home finger-prick tests to more than 365,000 randomly selected people in England found a roughly 26% decline in Covid-19 antibodies over just three months.
Eli Lilly says antibody treatment doesn't work on hospitalized Covid-19 patients
Eli Lilly and Co said Monday it would stop testing one of its experimental monoclonal antibody treatments in hospitalized Covid-19 patients after a review of results showed it did not seem to be helping them. The company said it would continue testing the treatment in patients with mild or moderate Covid-19 symptoms.
Chris Christie, the former governor of New Jersey, was among those to receive the treatment after he was diagnosed with Covid-19. And President Trump was administered a similar therapy, made by Regeneron, after he tested positive.
ON OUR RADAR
People are going to have to wear masks until vaccines are widely available -- which means well into next year at the very least, Dr. Anthony Fauci and two top staffers argued Monday. They spoke out in defense of cloth masks -- recently attacked by Republican Sen. Rand Paul -- and said taking tests regularly is not enough to absolve people of the need to wear a mask.
"Surgical masks can reduce respiratory virus shedding in exhaled breath, and the filtering efficacy of some materials used in cloth masks may approach that of surgical masks," they noted. Here's what else they had to say about why you should wear a mask.
"In this age of Covid, all tickets, basically, are digital. They're all on your phone. You scan it yourself when you go in. The days of seeing ticket scalpers outside of stadiums and on the streets...it's pretty much over." -- CNN sports anchor Andy Scholes
The World Series is on and fans are in the stands. Watching professional sports, in person, during a pandemic, looks and sounds a lot different. Scholes takes us inside the stadium for a play-by-play of the protocols meant to keep fans and stadium employees safe. Listen Now.