Deaths and cases of COVID-19 are on the rise again globally due to a dismal setback that triggers a new round of restrictions and dampens hopes of a return to normal.
The World Health Organization said Wednesday that the number of deaths increased last week after nine weeks of decline. More than 55,000 deaths were recorded, up 3% from the previous week.
The number of cases rose by 10% to nearly 3 million last week, with the highest rates reported in Brazil, India, Indonesia and the UK, according to WHO.
The reverse is due to low vaccination rates, weakening camouflage rules and other precautions, and the rapid spread of the more contagious delta variant, which the WHO says has now been identified in 111 countries and is expected to become the world’s dominant variant. the coming months.
Sarah McCool, a professor of public health at Georgia State University, said the combination represents “a recipe for a potential powder keg.”
“It is important that we are aware that COVID can cause explosive outbreaks,” warned Dr. David Dowdy is an infectious disease specialist at Johns Hopkins University.
Amid a sharp rise, the death toll in hard-hit Argentina has surpassed 100,000. Daily deaths from coronavirus in Russia hit a record high this week. In Belgium, the number of delta-induced COVID-19 infections among young people has nearly doubled over the past week. In the UK, for the first time in six months, more than 40,000 new cases were reported in a single day.
In Myanmar, crematoria are open from morning to night. In Indonesia, where nearly 1,000 deaths and more than 54,000 new infections were reported on Wednesday, up from about 8,000 a day a month ago, people near Jakarta are trying to help gravediggers keep up.
“Since the diggers were too tired and didn’t have enough resources to dig, the people in my area decided to help,” said Jaya Abidin. “Because if we don’t, we, in turn, will have to wait a long time for burial.”
In the United States, which has one of the highest vaccination rates in the world, the number of new confirmed infections per day has doubled in the past two weeks to an average of about 24,000, although deaths are still declining at around 260 per day.
Los Angeles County, the most populous county in the United States, reported more than 1,000 new cases on Tuesday for the fifth straight day.
Ahead of this month’s Summer Games, Tokyo is under a fourth state of emergency: infection is on the rise and hospital beds are overflowing. Experts say the number of sick people could exceed 1000 before the Olympics and rise to thousands during the games.
The surge has led to additional restrictions in places like Sydney, Australia, where 5 million residents will remain locked up for at least the end of July, two weeks longer than planned. South Korea has imposed the most stringent distancing rules in the Seoul area due to a record number of cases.
In parts of Spain, including Barcelona, a night curfew was imposed. London Mayor Sadiq Khan said masks will be required on buses and trains even after other restrictions are lifted in England next week. Italy has warned anyone traveling abroad that they may need to be quarantined before returning home.
Chicago announced that unvaccinated travelers from Missouri and Arkansas must either be quarantined for 10 days or test negative for COVID-19.
Connecticut lawmakers voted Wednesday to renew the Democratic Party government’s term of office again. Ned Lamont declared a state of emergency despite opposition from Republicans and some Democrats who argued it was time to get back to normal. Among other things, the move saves orders that require masks in certain settings.
A military base in Alabama has ordered troops to show proof of vaccination before they can drop the mask as the state is seeing a rise in COVID-19 cases, attributed to low vaccination rates. The measure was introduced Tuesday at Fort Rucker, home to the Army’s aviation program.
As alarming as the numbers around the world are, they are still well below the alarming numbers seen earlier this year.
According to Johns Hopkins, in the seven months since the vaccination campaign began, global deaths have dropped to about 7,900 per day, after surpassing 18,000 per day in January. The number of cases is about 450,000 per day, half of the peak at the end of April.
WHO acknowledged that many countries are currently facing “significant pressure” to remove all remaining precautions, but warned that if this is not done correctly, the virus will have more opportunities to spread.
Around the world, there is growing pressure to increase vaccination rates to counter the growth.
“If you’ve been waiting for so long, if you were on the verge of waiting, register and inject as soon as possible,” said New York City Health Commissioner Doctor Dave Chokshi pleaded.
Eighteen-year-old actress and singer Olivia Rodrigo made an appearance at the White House on Wednesday as part of President Joe Biden’s attempt to convince more young people. “Getting vaccinated will be easier than ever before,” she said.
While nearly 160 million Americans were fully vaccinated, or more than 55% of the population, young people showed less interest.
Ohio is planning another prize program to encourage vaccinations, and Gov. Mike DeVine has called on the government to give vaccines full approval, not just emergency permission, to allay people’s doubts.
“The reality is we now have two Ohio,” said Bruce Vanderhoff, the state’s chief physician. “Ohio, which is vaccinated and protected on the one hand, and Ohio, which is unvaccinated and vulnerable to delta, on the other.”
Michigan has already started a raffle for the COVID-19 vaccine and announced the first four winners of $ 50,000 on Wednesday. Bigger prizes are coming, including a $ 2 million jackpot.
In Missouri, which ranks second after Arkansas with the worst COVID-19 diagnosis rate in the past week, political leaders in and around St. Louis have stepped up efforts to vaccinate people through gift cards and bring in beauty and hairdressing salons to spread the word.
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