10 Jun 2020

Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic: global situation update

An update of global situation highlighting areas of concern Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic: global situation update

Key points:

  • Several million cases of COVID-19 and over 400,000 deaths are confirmed in this pandemic so far.
  • Cumulatively, the World Health Organization Region of the Americas have reported the greatest number of cases and deaths to date.
  • Some countries report a declining trend in number of cases and deaths, others have yet to reach the peak in their epidemic curve.
  • Difference in the ways COVID-19 cases and deaths are counted make comparison of data challenging.

On 30 January 2020, the Director-General (DG) of the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the COVID-19 outbreak a public health emergency of international concern (PHEIC) under the International Health Regulations (IHR) (2005) [1].

Almost every country in the world has now reported cases of COVID-19 during the ongoing pandemic, which started in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China at the end of December 2019.

By early June 2020, over seven million confirmed cases, including over 400,00 deaths had been reported worldwide with tens of thousands of new cases reported daily [2,3].

In this evolving pandemic, case numbers can change very quickly. Approaches to surveillance and reporting systems differ and this makes comparison between countries challenging.

The first cases in Europe were reported in France on 23 January 2020.

At the end of February 2020, the WHO European Region (which includes UK) reported a sharp increase in the cumulative number of cases seen in Europe [4]. As of 9 June 2020, the cumulative number of cases in this region has surpassed that of China with 2,307,132 confirmed cases with 184,731 deaths in a population of ≈446 million [3]. The highest total case numbers to date are reported in Russian Federation, UK, Spain and Italy followed closely by Germany and France [5, 6]. As of 9 June 2020, European countries with the highest deaths/100,000 population (though not necessarily the largest number of cases overall) were Belgium (84.1), UK (61.1), Spain (58.1), Italy (56.2), Sweden (46.1) and France (43.6)[5]. Following stringent public health measures including ‘lockdown’ in many European countries, most EU/European Economic Area countries have noted decreases or a slow-down in the increase in the daily number of newly reported cases [7].

The first cases in the WHO Region of the Americas were reported in Brazil (January 2020) and the Caribbean (February 2020). Since then, COVID-19 has spread to all 54 countries and territories in the Americas [8]. 

As of 9 June 2020, the WHO Region of the Americas reported the greatest burden of COVID-19 (3,366,251 confirmed cases with 183,950 deaths), exceeding the total cases reported in the WHO European Region [3].

The United States (US), Brazil, Peru, Chile and Canada account for the most cases in this region. As of 9 June 2020, the cumulative total confirmed cases/deaths in the US and Brazil reached 1,933,560 cases/110,220 deaths and 691,758 cases/36,455 deaths respectively [3]. Cases are rapidly increasing in Brazil with total confirmed case numbers only exceeded by the US. In the US, state by state, there are wide geographic differences in case numbers, deaths and incidence of COVID-19 and mortality rates overall [9].

As of 9 June 2020, WHO South East Asia Region the cumulative total of confirmed cases and deaths is 378,118/10,376 so far the greatest number of confirmed cases and deaths are in India, Bangladesh and Indonesia [2, 3].

In the WHO Western Pacific Region, since the first case reported from China at the end of December, 2019, all 22 countries in this region have reported cases (the majority reported by China) [2, 3]. As of the 9 June 2020, a cumulative total of 192,335 confirmed cases have been reported in this region. The highest total case numbers to date are reported in China, Singapore, Philippines and Japan. Following China’s response to the outbreak, the number of new cases and deaths have decreased, and the outbreak seems to be contained. In Singapore, where the initial outbreak was effectively contained by strict public health measures, a second wave of cases has occurred, initially in migrant workers [10]. As of 9 June, the cumulative total of confirmed cases/deaths in Singapore reached 38,296 cases/25 deaths [3]. This is the second highest total number of confirmed cases (after China) in this region.

In the WHO Eastern Mediterranean Region increasing number of cases are reported. As of 9 June 2020, there are 658,614 confirmed cases and 14,913 deaths reported. The majority of confirmed cases have been reported from Iran (173,832) followed by Pakistan (108,317), Saudi Arabia (105,283), and Qatar (70,158) [2, 11].

Cases and deaths in the WHO Africa Region have continued to rise since the first case was reported in February 2020. As of 9 June 2020, South Africa, Nigeria, Algeria, Ghana, Cameroon, Senegal, Guinea, Democratic Republic of Congo, Cote d’Ivoire, Gabon and Kenya account for the majority of the 140,498 cases reported in the region [3]. To date, South Africa reports the greatest number of confirmed cases (50,879) in the region.

Many countries in the world have fragile healthcare and surveillance systems and inadequate capacity to respond rapidly to public health emergencies. Efforts to strengthen preparedness and response plans in vulnerable countries are underway. WHO and United Nations have launched the COVID-19 Humanitarian Relief Plan [12] and further advice for UK humanitarian aid workers is available.

Data for all countries are subject to change. Currently the Situation Reports cited in this News Item are updated at the original source each day. Please refer to the original source for updated data.

Resources

  1. World Health Organization. Statement on the meeting of the International Health Regulations (2005) Emergency Committee regarding the outbreak of novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV)) 23 January 2020, Geneva. [Accessed 10 June 2020]
  2. World Health Organization. Coronavirus (COVID-19) Dashboard [Accessed 10 June 2020]
  3. World Health Organization. COVID-19 Situation Report 141. 9 June 2020. [Accessed 10 June 2020]
  4. Kinross P, Suetens Cl, Gomes Dias J et al., European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) Public Health Emergency Team. Rapidly increasing cumulative incidence of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in the European Union/European Economic Area and the United Kingdom, 1 January to 15 March 2020. Euro Surveillance 25(11) 19 March 2020. [Accessed 10 June 2020]
  5. European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control. Covid-19 Situation Report for the EU/EEA and the UK as of 9 June 2020. [Accessed 10 June 2020]
  6. European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control. Covid19 Dashboard. [Accessed 10 June 2020]
  7. European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control. Risk Assessment on Covid-19. 23 April 2020 [Accessed 10 June 2020]
  8. Pan American Health Organization (PAHO). Covid-19 Situation Reports. [Accessed 10 June 2020]
  9. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. US cases in the USA [Accessed 10 June 2020]
  10. Ministry of Health Singapore. COVID-19 Local Situation Reports. [Accessed 10 June 2020]
  11. World Health Organization Eastern Mediterranean Region COVID-19 affected countries [Accessed 10 June 2020]
  12. United Nations. Launch of Global Humanitarian Response Plan for COVID-19. New York. 25 March 2020 [Accessed 10 June 2020]

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