COVID-19 situation 'worsening' worldwide, says WHO chief; protests in US, EU spark fears of a second wave
The five worst-affected countries, as per the JHU tracker, US, Brazil, Russia, United Kingdom, followed by India.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) held a virtual press conference in Geneva this week, where the agency's chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus expressed concern over the rising number of infections in the US. He reiterated that the situation is worsening globally over time. The coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19) situation world over is deteriorating, he reiterated, warning nations against becoming complacent and easing necessary restrictions to keep the pandemic from spreading further.
Ghebreyesus pointed out that the WHO recorded the highest single-day spike in coronavirus cases after a surge in the American continents. As of 9 June 2020, over 7.1 million (7,119,736 people, to be exact) globally have been infected with COVID-19 , while 4,06,542 people have reportedly lost their lives to the pandemic, in the last six months when it went global.
"Although the situation in Europe is improving, globally it is worsening," WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told a virtual news conference in Geneva. "More than 1,00,000 cases have been reported on nine of the past 10 days. Yesterday, more than 1,36,000 cases were reported – the most in a single day so far."
The five worst-affected countries, as per the JHU tracker:
- US (1,961,185 infected/1,11,007 deaths),
- Brazil (7,07,412 infected/37,134 deaths),
- Russia (4,76,043 infected/5,963 deaths),
- United Kingdom (2,88,834 infected/40,680 deaths),
- India (2,66,598 infected/7,473 deaths)
Ghebreyesus said that 75 percent of the reported COVID-19 cases came from just ten countries, and the most affected regions were South America and South Asia.
"The biggest threat is now complacency", Ghebreyesus said, adding that "most people globally are still susceptible to infection. More than six months into this pandemic, this is not the time for any country to take its foot off the pedal."
Another looming threat in the still-growing pandemic is the string of mass protests against racism that have broken out in the United States as well as European countries after the killing of George Floyd, which has sparked fears of a second wave of new COVID-19 cases.
"WHO fully supports equality and the global movement against racism. We reject discrimination of all kinds...We encourage all those protesting around the world to do so safely," the WHO chief went on to say. "As much as possible, keep at least one metre from others, clean your hands, cover your cough, and wear a mask if you attend a protest."
The chief also insisted that anyone with symptoms of COVID-19 should stay home and seek out help from a healthcare professional.
COVID Task Force chief VK Paul, also a Niti Aayog member, said this is an unusual feat and has been achieved in the short period of just nine months of the programme
India registers 13,596 new COVID-19 infections, 166 fresh fatalities; active cases lowest in 221 days
The daily rise in new infections has been below 30,000 for 24 days and less than 50,000 for 113 consecutive days now
Health Emergencies Programme Executive Director Dr Mike Ryan said it's very important that WHO, when it makes a recommendation like that, is making that globally