This was remarkable news, reported in a remarkable way. Usually WHO and other health agencies put up a big headline for an update like this, when a new and dangerous virus seems to be spreading. Instead we got an almost stealthy report.
All day, we flu bloggers in effect chased our own tails, trying to find something to corroborate the surveillance recommendations and getting nothing but the original document and our own posts and tweets about it.
Now the news gets even stranger. In getting ready to write a post this evening about it, I clicked through to the interim surveillance report. It's not there. Instead of that PDF, you get a dark grey screen. If you haven't already done so, click on the second link in the first paragraph above, and you'll see what I mean. I can't find it by going through #coronavirus on Twitter either. (If you do see it, please save it and email it to me.)
Something about that document was medically or politically questionable. It may have been posted in error, or prematurely, or in an attempt to report the bare minimum of information. Before or after it was posted (or both), some fairly urgent meetings must have been held about the new "interim" surveillance recommendations, and someone finally decided to pull the document offline without explanation. But they didn't remove the link on WHO's coronavirus page, so many people must be clicking on it only to be baffled.
I would like to think WHO will explain everything on Friday morning and we'll all have a good laugh about it. Before the document disappeared, I'd already emailed them to ask for details about what it said. I hope to get an answer very soon.
Update: A reader did manage to access the document and emailed a copy of it. If you've had the same problem I did, here it is: Download InterimRevisedSurveillanceRecommendations.