Thousands of new cases are being recorded every day with triple-digit death counts in some countries. <small> Cover image via Greg Baker/AFP </small>
The coronavirus pandemic has entered its third week with no signs of slowing down as thousands of new cases are being recorded each day.
There were more than 40,000 new cases on Wednesday, 25 March.
Since being declared a pandemic by the World Health Organisation (WHO) on 11 March, the virus that causes COVID-19 has now reached every country in Europe and across the US.
In total, the coronavirus is currently affecting 198 countries and territories around the world with 471,060 cumulative total cases. Of which, 335,559 are currently active and a total of 21,283 people have died.
As of this writing, China is the only country where the spread of the virus has stopped, with more than 74,000 of the 81,285 who were infected making a full recovery. That's a 96% recovery rate.
In fact, the numbers of new cases in China hit a plateau since the start of March. In the last four weeks, it has recorded less than 1,000 new cases, according to Worldometer, a real-time statistics website.
<a href="https://images.says.com/uploads/story_source/source_image/773371/66a6.png" rel="segment-313198 noopener noreferrer" target="" title="Here's a linear graph showing newly infected vs newly recovered in China."> <img alt="Here's a linear graph showing newly infected vs newly recovered in China." src="https://images.says.com/uploads/story_source/source_image/773371/66a6.png"></img></a> Here's a linear graph showing newly infected vs newly recovered in China. <small>Image via Worldometer</small>
So how’s the situation outside China? Not so good.
Below is a summary of the global coronavirus outbreak in some of the worse affected countries.</p>
Italy’s numbers continue to rise amidst a painful lockdown
On 25 March, the country recorded more than 5,000 new cases and 743 new deaths, which broke two days of successive declines that had taken the number down to 601 on Monday, 23 March.
As of this writing, the cumulative total of COVID-19 patients in Italy was 74,386 with 7,503 deaths. Of the infected, a total of 9,362 patients have recovered.
The European country, affected the worst, has been in a painful lockdown since 9 March.
Its people, however, have found a way to teach the world that despite the harrowing situation faced by them, it’s that hope always wins and culture endures, a BBC article highlighted.
Death toll in Spain has surpassed that of China
It recorded more than 7,400 new COVID-19 cases on Wednesday with its death toll going past 3,640.
Spain now has the second-highest number of deaths globally after Italy.
According to New Straits Times, the pandemic has turned a skating rink in Madrid into a makeshift morgue.
Nursing homes across the country are overwhelmed as Spanish medical staff have taken out lawsuits against the government after facing a lack of basic protective equipment like masks, scrubs, and gloves.
Among the 49,515 infected cases, thousands of them consist of the medical staff in the country.
<a href="https://images.says.com/uploads/story_source/source_image/773492/cbaa.jpg" rel="segment-313252 noopener noreferrer" target="" title="Healthcare workers dealing with the coronavirus crisis at the entrance of the Fundacion Jimenez Diaz hospital in Madrid."> <img alt="Healthcare workers dealing with the coronavirus crisis at the entrance of the Fundacion Jimenez Diaz hospital in Madrid." src="https://images.says.com/uploads/story_source/source_image/773492/cbaa.jpg"></img></a> Healthcare workers dealing with the coronavirus crisis at the entrance of the Fundacion Jimenez Diaz hospital in Madrid. <small>Image via AFP photo via New Straits Times</small>
In France, the epidemic gets rapidly worse
On Tuesday, 23 March, French Health director-general Jérôme Salomon was reported saying by The Guardian that the epidemic was now across France and "rapidly getting worse".
France has more than 25,000 confirmed cases. Out of which, 1,331 have died and 3,900 recovered.
However, officials in the country believe that the published number of those infected and the death toll largely underestimates the real figure, an AFP report said yesterday, 25 March.
According to them, only those showing severe symptoms are usually being tested and the death toll includes only those recorded to have died in hospitals and not those who pass away in old people’s homes.
Germany’s hope lies in its relatively low death rate
While the death toll in Italy and Spain is horrifying, Germany has managed to stand out with just 206 deaths out of its cumulative total of 37,323 cases. Out of which, 3,547 patients have recovered.
Going forward, the coronavirus situation in the country is projected to be under control as Germany is reportedly better equipped than most countries when it comes to health care.
According to NBC News, it has 28,000 intensive care beds.
In the US, Donald Trump claims the nation is nearing the end of the fight against the virus despite more than 13,000 new cases in a day
On 10 March, there were less than 1,000 cases in total in the US.
Since then, the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases there has seen an exponential rise. As of this writing, the cumulative total stands at 68,489 with 1,032 deaths and 394 recovered.
However, the American president, worried about the country’s failing economy, insists on lifting the restrictions on activities in parts of the country and has asked people go back to work.
“It’s time. People want to get back to work,” Trump said in a briefing Wednesday.
The Wall Street Journal reported him saying that the “large sections” of the country could return to work far sooner than others, with state heads saying they will put people before economy.
<a href="https://images.says.com/uploads/story_source/source_image/773599/13a1.png" rel="segment-313278 noopener noreferrer" target="" title="The number of active cases in the United States."> <img alt="The number of active cases in the United States." src="https://images.says.com/uploads/story_source/source_image/773599/13a1.png"></img></a> The number of active cases in the United States. <small>Image via Worldometer</small>
Meanwhile, in India, where new cases are rising daily, another kind of chaos has ensued after Prime Minister Narendra Modi placed the entire country of 1.3 billion people in complete lockdown for 21 days
On Tuesday, the Indian Prime Minister warned that "many families will be destroyed forever" if the drastic measure was not taken to fight the coronavirus outbreak in the next three weeks.
However, his initial announcement — which came without any guidelines about what the lockdown meant for everyday people, essential service providers — caused panic around the country.
In the absence of clear instructions and heavy-handed treatment by an overzealous police system, stores that provide daily essentials, food delivery services, and transport trucks that maintain the supply chain were either completely shut in major cities or remained disrupted in other parts of the country.
<blockquote><p dir="ltr" lang="en">Dear @CMOMaharashtra a large number of Kerala truck drivers returning home in empty lorries after delivering fruits&vegetables in Gujarat are held up in Bhiwandi w/out food, water or toilet facilities. Could Maharashtra Govt kindly instruct police to allow them to go toKerala?</p>— Shashi Tharoor (@ShashiTharoor) March 25, 2020</blockquote>
Back home, the Agong and Raja Permaisuri have been quarantined after seven Istana Negara staffers tested positive for COVID-19:
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