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COVID-19: Global death toll crosses 47,000; WHO worried over ‘near exponential growth’ of coronavirus

The global death toll from the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) crossed 47,000 on Thursday, in an alarming hike which has left world leaders and intergovernmental organisations concerned over the spread of the virus, which continues to rush like wildfire across the world.

The Director-General of the World Health Organisation (WHO), Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, had on Wednesday expressed serious concern over the ‘near exponential growth’ of the COVID-19 pandemic outbreak, as the number of cases hiked by a lakh over the mere span of a single day. The worldwide death toll, too, has doubled in just a week.

Ghebreyesus urged people across the world to join hands to defeat the coronavirus.

“As we enter the fourth month since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, I am deeply concerned about the rapid escalation and global spread of infection,” the WHO chief told a virtual news conference, “Over the past five weeks, we have witnessed a near exponential growth in the number of new cases, reaching almost every country. The number of deaths has more than doubled in the past week. In the next few days, we will reach one million confirmed cases and 50,000 deaths.”

Warning that the virus not only bears disease and death, but also serious social, economic, and political consequences especially from Africa and the Latin American region, Ghebreyesus said, “It is critical that we ensure these countries are well equipped to detect, test, isolate and treat COVID-19 cases, and identify contacts.”

The WHO chief urged governments to implement social welfare measures to safeguard poor people from going hungry during the crisis. He also sought debt relief for poor nations.

“Many developing countries will struggle to implement social welfare programs of this nature. For those countries, debt relief is essential to enable them to take care of their people and avoid economic collapse,” said Tedros.

In a staggering hike, the number of ‘confirmed’ coronavirus disease (COVID-19) cases in the world crossed nine lakh on Wednesday at around 11:30 PM, with the Coronavirus Resource Center at the John Hopkins University putting the total number of confirmed cases worldwide at 937,170 on Thursday at 10:15 AM.

It is worth noting that it just took a little over 24 hours for the number of global cases to jump from eight lakh to nine lakh. As statistics display on Thursday, the number of positive COVID-19 in the US has now crossed two lakh, while the tally crossed one lakh in and Spain and Italy the last evening as well.

The global death toll stands at 47,235, according to the university resource center, with the most number of deaths yet in Italy (13,155 deaths) followed by Spain (9,387 deaths) and France (4,032 deaths).

The situation in the United Kingdom, too, continued to worsen as 4,324 new cases and 563 new deaths were reported in the country in the past 24 hours, including two teenagers, a 13-year-old boy, and a 19-year-old man, according to the UK government data. The number of positive COVID-19 cases in the UK stands at 29,865 with 2,352 total deaths from the virus.

China, where the outbreak was first reported, is now fourth in terms of the number of cases (82,361 cases) as well as when it comes to the death toll (3,193 deaths). (News by DNA)

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