Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the director general of the World Health Organization, warned that the planet should prepare for a potential disease "even deadlier" than COVID-19 while addressing the World Health Assembly forum in Geneva, Switzerland, on Monday (May 22), Daily Mail reports.
Ghebreyesus said the threat of another public health crisis can't be "kicked down the road" and, despite having already gotten past the height of the coronavirus pandemic, a doomsday variant could potentially set the world back.
"The threat of another variant emerging that causes new surges of disease and death remains. And the threat of another pathogen emerging with even deadlier potential remains," Ghebreyesus said.
Ghebreyesus' comments came as the World Health Organization shared its global plan to spot and track the most dangerous pathogens during the annual World Health Assembly, which was attended by 194 member states. The announcement didn't name any specific diseases, however, 'Disease X' was listed among the WHO's greatest possible threats as a place-holder for a devastating pathogen that hasn't yet been discovered.
The WHO declared that COVID-19 no longer served as a global health emergency last month, but instead an "established and ongoing health issue" three years after the initial outbreak in December 2019 and official beginning of the pandemic in March 2020.