The World Health Organisation's top emergency expert, Mike Ryan, opined in an interview on the BBC's Andrew Marr Show, that a set of strict public health measures will also be necessary along with lockdown in order to prevent a potential resurgence of the virus.
Countries can't simply lock down their societies to defeat coronavirus, Ryan said on March 22.
"What we really need to focus on is finding those who are sick, those who have the virus, and isolate them, find their contacts and isolate them," he was quoted as saying.
"The danger right now with the lockdowns ... if we don't put in place the strong public health measures now, when those movement restrictions and lockdowns are lifted, the danger is the disease will jump back up," he added.
NDTV reported that major areas of Europe and the United States have followed China and other Asian countries and introduced drastic restrictions to fight the deadly strain of coronavirus. Most employees have been instructed to work from home. Schools, bars, pubs and restaurants have been shut down.
WHO recently stated that Europe has replaced Asia as the epicentre of the pandemic.
China, Singapore and South Korea, which coupled restrictions with rigorous measures to test every possible suspect have provided a model for Europe, Ryan said.
"Once we've suppressed the transmission, we have to go after the virus. We have to take the fight to the virus," Mike Ryan was quoted as saying.
He noted that several vaccines were already being developed and one was in the trial stage. However, people would need to be realistic about how long it will take before such medicines become widely available.
"We have to make sure that it's absolutely safe... we are talking at least a year," the WHO expert was quoted as saying.
"The vaccines will come, but we need to get out and do what we need to do now," he added.
At least 2,94,110 confirmed cases of COVID-19 have been reported globally. The virus has claimed 12,944 lives and has spread to 187 countries, areas or territories. ( source: WHO)
Also Read: COVID-19 Vaccine: Challenges In Production & What Lies Ahead