WHO sees "green shoots" of hope in pandemic

While cases have still been rapidly rising in many regions of the world, there were "green shoots of hope", the WHO's Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said in an online media briefing.

Tedros also said that dexamethasone should only be used under close medical supervision, after initial results of a clinical trial had shown that the cheap, common steroid can help save critically ill patients.

Trial results announced on Tuesday (June 16) by researchers in Britain showed dexamethasone, used since the 1960s to reduce inflammation in diseases such as arthritis, cut death rates by around a third among the most severely ill COVID-19 patients admitted to hospital.