Coronavirus pandemic: Tracking the global outbreak

Coronavirus pandemic: Tracking the global outbreak

Members of a coronavirus testing station stand on the factory premises of the Westfleisch meat processing company in Hamm, western Germany, on May 10, 2020.

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Coronavirus is continuing its spread across the world, with more than four million confirmed cases in 187 countries. More than 282,000 people have lost their lives.

The United States alone has more than 1.3 million confirmed cases – almost six times as many as any other country.

This series of maps and charts tracks the global outbreak of the virus since it emerged in China in December last year.

How many cases and deaths have there been?

The virus, which causes the respiratory infection Covid-19, was first detected in the city of Wuhan, China, in late 2019.

Confirmed cases around the world


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Source: Johns Hopkins University, national public health agencies

Figures last updated

11 May 2020, 10:47 BST

Note: The map and table in this page use a different source for figures for France from that used by Johns Hopkins University, which results in a slightly lower overall total.

The US has by far the largest number of cases, according to figures collated by Johns Hopkins University. With more than 79,000 fatalities, it also has the world’s highest death toll.

France, Italy, Spain and the UK – the worst-hit European countries – have all recorded more than 25,000 deaths.

In China, the official death toll is some 4,600 from about 84,000 confirmed cases, although critics have questioned whether the country’s official numbers can be trusted.

Wuhan reported five new cases on Monday, after confirming its first case since 3 April on Sunday.

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This information is regularly updated but may not reflect the latest totals for each country.

** The past data for new cases is a three day rolling average. Due to revisions in the number of cases, an average cannot be calculated for this date.

Source: Johns Hopkins University, national public health agencies

Figures last updated: 11 May 2020, 10:47 BST

The outbreak was declared a global pandemic by the World Health Organization (WHO) on 11 March. This is when an infectious disease is passing easily from person to person in many parts of the world at the same time.

The true number of cases is thought to be much higher than the reported figures, as many of those with milder symptoms have not been tested and counted.

Globally, more than 4.5 billion people – half the world’s population – have been living under social distancing measures, according to the AFP news agency’s estimates.

Those restrictions have had a big impact on the global economy, with the International Monetary Fund warning the world faces the worst recession since the Great Depression of the 1930s.

The United Nations World Food Programme has also warned that the pandemic could almost double the number of people suffering acute hunger, and the UN has appealed for $6.7bn (£5.4bn) in funding.

UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs Mark Lowcock said “the spectre of multiple famines” loomed.

Where are coronavirus cases still rising?

While some countries are starting to see confirmed cases and deaths fall following the introduction of strict lockdown restrictions, others are only now seeing them rise.

Russia’s latest official data shows it now has the third highest number of infections worldwide. The country has reported more than 10,000 new cases for eight consecutive days.

These charts show four countries where deaths are on an upward trajectory – as shown by the red lines – each following a similar pattern.

Across Latin America, where many economies are already struggling and millions live on what they can earn day-to-day, there are concerns about the strain coronavirus could put on health care systems.

Ecuador has already seen its health system collapse – thousands have died from the virus and other conditions that could not be treated because of the crisis. The country’s official number of coronavirus deaths is around 2,100 but the death toll is thought to be much higher.

The growing threat in South America and elsewhere comes as Europe and other regions are slowly beginning to ease lockdown measures brought in to slow the spread of the virus.

New Zealand says it has effectively eliminated the threat posed by the virus after fewer than 1,500 confirmed cases and just 21 deaths. Its authorities had brought in some of the toughest restrictions on travel and activity early in the pandemic.

Europe slowly easing lockdown measures

In Europe, the UK became the first country to record more than 30,000 coronavirus deaths last week.

It surpassed Italy, which was the first country in the region to see a rapid increase in deaths in early March.

Differences in population size and how countries report their figures, with some including deaths in care homes, or deaths of those suspected but not confirmed of having the virus, means international comparisons are complicated.

However, the UK, Italy, Spain, France and many other European countries appear to have passed through the peak of the virus and the number of new reported cases and deaths is falling.

Germany and Belgium have also recorded a relatively high number of deaths and are now seeing those numbers decrease, though as Belgium has a far smaller population than Germany, the number of deaths per capita there has been higher.

How countries across Europe are planning to move out of lockdown varies, with the EU saying there is “no one-size-fits-all approach” to lifting containment measures.

In Germany, all shops can now reopen with extra measures in place and schools have partially reopened. Members of two different households are now allowed to meet up with each other and Bundesliga football matches are due to resume behind closed doors on Saturday 16 May.

Infection rates in Germany have increased in recent days and according to the Robert Koch Institute (RKI), the reproduction rate – the estimated number of people a confirmed patient infects – is now above 1.

France has been split into red and green zones with restrictions being eased more areas designated green than those designated red. From 11 May, all shops except Paris shopping centres can open, but not bars and restaurants. Car journeys within a radius of up to 100km (62 miles) from home are permitted.

Spain has announced a four-phase plan to lift its lockdown and return to a “new normality” by the end of June. However, schools will not be fully reopened until September.

In Italy, some shops and factories have now reopened and bars and cafes are being allowed to offer takeaway services.

In the UK, Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced a limited easing of restrictions on Sunday, saying that those who cannot work from home should now be “actively encouraged” to return to their workplace, but not use public transport.

Other European countries easing restrictions include Poland, Denmark, Switzerland and the Netherlands.

New York remains epicentre of US outbreak

With more than 1.3 million cases, the US has the highest number of confirmed infections in the world. It has also recorded more than 79,000 deaths.

The state of New York has been particularly badly affected, with more than 26,000 deaths.

At one point, more than 90% of the US population was under mandatory lockdown orders, but many states have now begun to loosen their stay-at-home restrictions and allowed some businesses to reopen – a move health officials fear could further spread the virus.

Last week President Donald Trump said he would refocus the White House task force on kickstarting the US economy, a day after suggesting he would disband it.

The US unemployment rate has risen to 14.7%, with 20.5 million jobs lost in April, as the coronavirus pandemic devastated the economy.

The rise means the jobless rate is now worse than at any time since the Great Depression of the 1930s.

Former US President Barack Obama has criticised his successor’s response to the crisis. During a private phone call to former staffers, Mr Obama called the response “an absolute chaotic disaster”.

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