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WHO: COVID infections surged globally in four weeks

WHO: COVID infections surged globally in four weeks
August 05
08:43 2021

The World Health Organisation (WHO) says COVID-19 infections have continued to rise globally for more than a month — with over four million cases reported in the past week alone.

The agency, in its latest update on Wednesday, attributed the increase to “substantial” caseload increases of 33 percent in the western pacific and 37 percent in the Eastern Mediterranean – where coronavirus fatalities also rose 48 and 31 percent, respectively.

It said the number of deaths in the four remaining WHO regions of Africa, Americas, Europe and South-east Asia matched with previous weeks, apart from the Americas, which dropped by 29 percent.

According to NAN, it said the total number of reported cases is around 197 million and with 4.2 million deaths worldwide.  

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Ranked by country, the United states topped the number of new infections over the past week; with 543,420 new cases, a nine percent jump, followed by India, which had 283,923 new cases and a seven percent increase.

WHO said while Alpha variant infections have been reported in 182 countries, the Delta variant has now been confirmed in three new countries, infecting a total of 135 nations.

By region, WHO said Africa – now in its third coronavirus wave – had reported similar number of weekly cases and deaths as the previous seven-day period, with just over 182,000 new cases and more than 4,800 new deaths.

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But the UN agency explained that the overall regional decrease in confirmed weekly infections and deaths on the continent since the middle of July is still being driven by falling numbers in South Africa.

In the Americas, where there have been more than 1.2 million new infections and over 20,000 COVID-19 deaths in the past week, WHO noted an increase in Mexico, which had 80.1 new cases per 100,000.

In the Eastern Mediterranean, as increase in cases and deaths were mainly driven by Iran, where new infections rose to more than 206,000; Iraq with 83,098 cases; and Morocco, which witnessed 48,366 new cases.

After more than a month of increase in COVID-19 infections and deaths, Europe saw a drop in weekly cases – driven by decreases in Spain and the UK.

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However, at just over 8,000, the death toll in Europe was similar to the previous week.

While the number of weekly deaths remained stable, at 22,000 in South-east Asia, new infections topped 841,000.

In the Western Pacific, WHO reported that Japan and Malaysia drove a spike in infections while attributing an increase in deaths largely to Malaysia (1,122 new deaths) and Viet Nam, 936.

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