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COVID-19 | Virus cases about two million worldwide; few new hot spots

Paramedics take a patient in to an emergency center at Maimonides Medical Center during the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in the Brooklyn borough of New York on April 13, 2020.

Paramedics take a patient in to an emergency center at Maimonides Medical Center during the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in the Brooklyn borough of New York on April 13, 2020.   | Photo Credit: REUTERS

An online dashboard that tracks the global number of confirmed cases, maintained by Johns Hopkins University, late Monday night showed the number of cases in the U.S. approaching 683,000, with more than 2 million worldwide

New York’s coronavirus death toll topped 10,000 and the worldwide number of confirmed cases hovered around 2 million on Monday, even as the lack of fresh hot spots globally yielded a ray of optimism and fueled discussions about how some places might begin to reopen.

The brunt of the disease has been felt most heavily in New York, Italy, France, Spain and the United Kingdom, but grim projections of a virus that would spread with equal ferocity to other corners of America and the world have not yet materialized after more than a month of measures meant to blunt its impact.

Also read | Coronavirus: Global deaths cross 110,000, declared cases touch 1.8 million

An online dashboard that tracks the global number of confirmed coronavirus cases, maintained by Johns Hopkins University, late Monday night showed the number of cases in the U.S. approaching 683,000, with more than 2 million worldwide. The site was later adjusted to reflect nearly 582,000 cases in the U.S. and 1.9 million cases worldwide. It was not immediately clear why the numbers changed. Of those 1.9 million cases, nearly 120,000 people have died, while nearly 449,600 have recovered.

Officials around the world worried that halting quarantine and social-distancing measures could easily undo the hard-earned progress that those steps have achieved in slowing the spread.

Still, there were signs countries were looking in that direction. Spain permitted some workers to return to their jobs, while a hard-hit region of Italy loosened its lockdown restrictions. Governors on both coasts of the U.S. announced that they would join forces to come up with a coordinated reopening at some point, setting the stage for a potential conflict with President Donald Trump, who asserted that he is the ultimate decision-maker for determining how and when to reopen.

Also read | Coronavirus: New York Governor Andrew Cuomo says ‘Worst is over’ as US grapples with reopening

New York saw a few positive signs Monday even as it reached another bleak milestone. It marked the first time in a week that the daily toll dipped below 700. Almost 2,000 people were newly hospitalized with the virus Sunday, though once discharges and deaths are accounted for, the number of people hospitalized has flattened to just under 19,000.

China, where the pandemic began, reported 89 new virus cases on Tuesday, 86 of them among travelers arriving from abroad, but no new deaths. The country’s total death toll stood at 3,341 out of 82,249 cases.

Also read | China’s imported coronavirus cases climb to 1,464

South Korea on Tuesday reported its 13th day in a row with fewer than 100 confirmed cases of the virus, as infections continued to wane in the worst-hit city of Daegu and nearby towns. In early March, the country was reporting about 500 new cases per day.

The infection rate remains relatively low in areas of the developing world that have poor or nonexistent health care infrastructure. The rapid spread of the coronavirus beyond cities to more rural areas often depends on travel and social connections, said Dr. Mike Ryan, the World Health Organization’s emergencies chief.

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Printable version | Aug 5, 2020 2:12:18 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/international/virus-cases-about-two-million-worldwide-few-new-hot-spots/article31337663.ece

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