Global COVID-19 cases exceed 412 million with death toll topping 5.82 million
The cumulative number of global COVID-19 cases had exceeded 412 million with the death toll surpassing 5.82 million as of Tuesday, according to the latest data released by the World Health Organization (WHO).
Specifically, there had been 412,351,279 confirmed cases of COVID-19, including 5,821,004 deaths, as of 17:50 Central European Time (CET) on Tuesday.
The case count of the United States rose to 78,027,205 with death toll reaching 925,287 as of 20:20 Eastern Standard Time (EST) on Tuesday, according to the latest data released by the Center for Systems Science and Engineering (CSSE) at Johns Hopkins University.
The average number of new deaths per day in the country remained at a high level. The cumulative number of COVID-19-related deaths in the U.S. is likely to exceed 1 million in April, the analysis of American media forecast.
Despite the lingering severity in epidemic situation, half of the U.S. states have repealed the mask mandates for schools and indoor public settings.
Regrettably, the latest data showed that since the CDC recommended that the elderly and other high-risk adults be vaccinated with COVID-19 booster shot, the vaccination rate of booster has dropped to the lowest level.
So far, only 28 percent of the population in the country has completed the booster vaccination, leading to worries and concerns of many public health experts.
The European Region recorded over 165 million COVID-19 cases and 1.8 million deaths in total, said WHO Regional Director for Europe Hans Kluge in a statement on Tuesday.
Around 25,000 people lost their lives to the coronavirus in the past week, Kluge said, adding the local health systems have been overstretched under increasing strain, with rising infections among health-care workers.
As risk remains high in eastern Europe and central Asia with arrival of COVID-19 Omicron variant, Kluge called on governments, health authorities and relevant partners to closely examine the local reasons influencing lower vaccine demand and acceptance, and devise tailored interventions to increase vaccination rates urgently.
As of the 0:00 Tuesday, Germany’s case count of COVID-19 had reached 12,580,343, which is 159,217 higher than the previous day, according to the data from the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) for infectious diseases.
The seven-day infection incidence per 100,000 people fell three days in a row to 1,437.5, the RKI said.
German Health Minister Karl Lauterbach on Tuesday said the country could start easing restrictions as weeks of case surge has been suppressed and a wave of infections with the Omicron variant is subsiding.
Britain on Tuesday reported 46,186 new COVID-19 cases and 234 deaths, bringing the national case count to 18,393,951 and the death toll to 159,839, according to its health ministry.
The number of new confirmed cases and deaths registered in the past seven days in Britain decreased by 27.6 percent and 35.5 percent, respectively, from the previous week.
While in Asia, Japan confirmed more than 84,000 new infections on Tuesday, taking the cumulative total to over 4.07 million, according to the NHK.
A record high of 236 deaths were also reported in the country, taking the national death toll to 20,772.
In addition, nearly 100,000 children across Japan were infected with the coronavirus in January, according to statistics from the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology.
South Korea’s daily number of COVID-19 cases hit a record high amid the spread of the Omicron variant of the virus, the health authorities said Wednesday.
According to the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA), the country reported 90,443 more confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the past 24 hours, raising the total tally to 1,552,851.
The daily caseload was up from 57,177 in the previous day, topping 90,000 for the first time in the Asian country.
Thirty-nine more deaths were confirmed from the pandemic, bringing the death toll to 7,202. The total fatality rate was 0.46 percent.
Indonesia confirmed 57,049 new COVID-19 cases on Tuesday, the highest in two months since Omicron infections were first detected in the country, raising its tally of infections to 4,901,328, said the country’s health ministry.
According to the ministry, the death toll from COVID-19 in the country rose by 134 to 145,455, while 26,747 more people recovered from the disease during the past 24 hours, bringing the total number of recoveries to 4,349,848.
New Zealand recorded 1,203 new cases of COVID-19 on Wednesday, including 1,160 community cases and 43 imported ones, said its health ministry in a statement. It is the first time for the daily cases to surpass the 1,000 mark since the beginning of the pandemic in the country.
To date, New Zealand has reported a total of 23,127 confirmed cases of COVID-19, according to the ministry.
COVID-19 in Iran: Nearly 900 new cases, 24 deaths recorded
The Iranian health ministry announced on Sunday that more than 890 new cases of COVID-19 have been identified across the country during the past 24 hours, adding that 24 patients have died in the same period of time, Fars News Agency reported.
“A sum of 891 new patients infected with COVID-19 have been identified in the country based on confirmed diagnosis criteria during the past 24 hours,” the Iranian Health Ministry’s Public Relations Center said on Sunday, adding, “454 patients have been hospitalized during the same time span.”
The ministry’s public relations center said 611 people infected with COVID-19 are in critical condition.
China says 200 million treated, pandemic ‘decisively’ beaten
China says more than 200 million of its citizens have been diagnosed and treated for COVID-19 since it lifted strict containment measures beginning in November.
With 800,000 of the most critically ill patients having recovered, China has “decisively beaten” the pandemic, according to notes from a meeting of the ruling Communist Party’s all-powerful Politburo Standing Committee presided over by President and party leader Xi Jinping, AP reported.
China enforced some of the world’s most draconian lockdowns, quarantines and travel restrictions and still faces questions about the origins of the virus that was first detected in the central Chinese city of Wuhan in late 2019. Heavy-handed enforcement prompted rare anti-government protests and took a heavy toll on the world’s second-largest economy.
The official Xinhua News Agency quoted Xi as saying that policies to control the outbreak had been “entirely correct.” The abrupt lifting in November and December of the “zero COVID” policy that had sought to eliminate all cases of the virus led to a surge in infections that temporarily overwhelmed hospitals.
Case numbers have since peaked and life has largely returned to normal, although international travel in and out of China has yet to return to pre-pandemic levels.
China is now transitioning to a post-pandemic stage after a fight against the outbreak that was “extraordinary in the extreme,” Xinhua said.
The government will continue to “optimize and adjust prevention and control policies and measures according to the times and situations with a strong historical responsibility and strong strategic determination,” Xinhua said.
Study suggests people who had COVID-19 risk new-onset diabetes
A new Cedars-Sinai Medical Center suggests that people who have previously been infected with COVID-19 could stand an increased risk for new-onset diabetes.
The study’s results, conducted by researchers at the Smidt Heart Institute at Cedars-Sinai “have confirmed that people who have had COVID-19 have an increased risk for new-onset diabetes — the most significant contributor to cardiovascular disease.”
“Our results validate early findings revealing a risk of developing Type 2 diabetes after a COVID-19 infection and indicate that this risk has, unfortunately, persisted through the Omicron era,” said Dr. Alan Kwan, the author of the study and a cardiovascular physician at Cedars-Sinai.
“The research study helps us understand — and better prepare for — the post COVID-19 era of cardiovascular risk,” he said.
The study also suggests that the risk of Type 2 diabetes appears to be lower in those who had already been vaccinated against COVID-19 prior to their infection.
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