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Coronavirus is re-emerging across Europe after easing restrictions in many countries, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).

There has been an increase in weekly cases last week for the “first time in months,” the head of the WHO for Europe, Henri Kluge, told a news conference in Copenhagen.

Cluj said he had warned of the “risk of a resurgence” as countries eased the locking measures.

Thirty countries in Europe have seen increases in cumulative cases in the past fortnight, he said.

Kluge added that the rapid transmission in 11 countries “has led to a very significant resurgence that if left unchecked will push health systems to the brink once again in Europe”.

“While the European region reports a declining global rate than earlier this year, the region continues to report nearly 20,000 new cases and more than 700 new deaths daily,” he said.

Kluge cited Poland, Germany and Spain as examples of countries that have responded quickly to new Covid-19 cases in schools, coal mines and food production facilities.

“Rapid and targeted interventions” from these countries helped control the transmission, the WHO official said.

Kluge also stressed the role that digital technology can play in suppressing hotspots.

“We need to be smarter by using the data and information we have from Covid-19 tracking systems,” he said.

Twenty-seven countries have released national solutions for digitally locating contacts with ongoing solutions in places such as Portugal and Ireland.

Kluge also talked about artificial intelligence pilot projects, including an Italian smartphone app that measures a person’s heart rate, oxygen saturation rate and real-time respiration rate.

According to Kluge, these digital technologies are helping health systems to “address basic health care”, but have warned that “digital health integration needs to be done carefully and prudently in collaboration with the public and patients.”

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