Phnom Penh (FN), Mar. 19 — The Ministry of Health (MOH) and the World Health Organization (WHO) called on everyone to do what they can to fight against COVID-19 with solidarity, according to the joint press release seen by Fresh News on Friday.

"The current COVID-19 situation in Cambodia remains serious. What we do right now will determine the course of this outbreak," said His Excellency Professor Mam Bunheng, Minister of Health. "We must all accelerate our efforts to stop the spread of COVID-19 in the coming days and weeks. Lives depend on it."

On 20 February, 32 locally acquired COVID-19 cases were reported in Phnom Penh after a breach in quarantine. As of 19 March, a total of 1578 cases, including one death, have been reported in Cambodia since the beginning of the pandemic. The recent COVID-19 outbreaks are most likely caused by the new B.1.1.7 variant, which transmits more quickly than previously circulating virus. Seeking appropriate care in a timely manner can reduce the risk of dying due to COVID-19. Cambodia reported its first death due to COVID-19 on 11 March

"The first tragic death due to COVID-19 is a reminder to us all of the seriousness of this disease. It can affect anyone at any time," said Dr Li Ailan, WHO Representative to Cambodia. "The country is at a critical stage of fighting against COVID-19, but we have a window of opportunity to stop virus spread if we all act together with solidarity."

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