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The new coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, responsible for the COVID-19 disease, exceeds the 5.3 million deaths and has already infected more than 278 million people worldwide, according to the independent count of Johns Hopkins University, which monitors the situation of the coronavirus with the general data of all the countries of the world since the beginning of the pandemic.
The United States is the country with the highest death toll, with around 815,000 deaths; followed by Brazil, above 618,000; and India with more than 479,000 dead.
This is how the number of cases and deaths in the world evolves.
At the beginning of August, the world exceeded 200 million reported cases. It did so only six months after exceeding 100 million. The country with the most infections in absolute terms continues to be the United States, followed by India and Brazil.
After the decline in the previous week, COVID-19 infections have continued to decline in the last week, despite the sharp increase in infections that has been registered in many Western European countries, according to the latest weekly report from the World Health Organization (WHO), which indicates that cases fell 2% to just over 4.1 million. The deaths also fell, by 9%, to below 44,000 deaths between December 13 and 19.
Africa, the continent where the new omicron variant was first detected, the region was one more week where there was a greater increase in cases (53%, 256,000 more), although in absolute numbers it was again Europe the area with the most cases (2.6 million, 3% less than in the previous week). The greatest decreases occurred in the Eastern Mediterranean and South Asia regions (-12%) and in America (904,000 infections, 10% less).
By country, the United States continues to be the one with the most weekly cases (725,000 last week, 12% less than the previous week), followed by the United Kingdom (507,000, 45% more), France (358,000, 7% more ) and Germany (283,000, 19% less).
Africa had the only regional increase in deaths, 15%, although in absolute figures it was the one with the fewest deaths, 560, while Europe was another week the area with the most deaths (26,800), although they fell by 7% compared to the previous week. In America the deceased fell by 15% (10,200), and in the rest of the regions there were also decreases that were 6% in East and South Asia and 12% in the Middle East (about 7,000 in total in the three areas).
Begining of June, Peru carried out a review of your data that involved the incorporation of more than 115,000 deceased for coronavirus to their official statistics. With more than 200,000 registered deaths, the South American country has thus become the one with the highest mortality rate in the world.
All in all, the official COVID-19 death count is certainly lower than the excess of actual deaths. The WHO itself estimates that the real numbers of deaths from coronavirus are two or three times higher than the official count, due in large part to the collapse experienced in the health system of many countries that has prevented a faithful monitoring of the impact of the disease.
Data by continents
In U.S, the nation most affected, the arrival to the White House of Democrat Joe Biden marked a change of course in the management of the pandemic. On the other hand, China, the epicenter country of the outbreak, has contained the advance of the pandemic for months. Now in Asia the most affected country is India, the second most populous in the world, which has not been able to prevent the spread of SARS-CoV-2.
In Africa, the rate of infections has accelerated. The continent exceeds 9.3 million cases and 226,000 deaths, when the percentages of vaccination are still very low. And in Latin America, the countries with the most new cases are Brazil, Colombia and Argentina.
In Oceania, the keynote has been severe restrictions. Australia, which has registered more than 270,000 infections and about 2,200 deaths, was seen forced to impose restrictions in summer after controlling the spread of the coronavirus for several months. New Zealand, which imposed a very strict confinement, declared the country free of coronavirus in the summer of 2020 and it did it again in December after controlling its active outbreaks.
The coronavirus, which has already left more than five million deaths worldwide, has, however, had a unequal lethality in each territoryAlthough the United States, Brazil and India are the three countries with the most deaths in absolute terms, the comparison between the deaths of countries with more than one million inhabitants in relation to their population reveals that Peru is the one with the highest mortality rate, with 614 deaths per 100,000 inhabitants. Spain, which came to occupy the second place in this ranking, currently reports a rate of 190 deaths and is no longer among the twenty with the highest mortality.
The following graph shows the accumulated data of the pandemic in each continent and the proportion that it supposes with respect to the total. America accumulates 36% of diagnoses and 45% of deaths, while about 30% of infections and deaths have occurred in Europe.
However, this distribution has not always been this way. The virus has already been around the world several times. Since the pandemic broke out in China at the end of 2019, the different waves of infections and deaths have affected the planet unevenly. Cases grew in Europe in March 2020, although the virus soon hit America, and in October already one million deaths were reached on a global scale. In January 2021, the coronavirus exceeded one hundred million infected people.
The pandemic in Spain
The coronavirus spread through Spain since February 2020 and in mid-March forced to impose the state of alarm to try to stop the infections and alleviate saturation in hospitals. For more than two months, the Spanish suffered one of the strictest confinements in the world, which did not prevent them from health services were outmatched in many places before achieving flattening the curve.
With everything, Spain continues to be one of the countries with the most cases and deaths with COVID-19 on the planet And after a rebound in SARS-CoV-2 in the summer, it is in a better state, thanks in large part to the high coverage of its vaccination campaign. How is the situation now?
Methodology and sources
For the preparation of this information, data from the Ministry of Health or official sources of each country were used, which were combined with those offered on a global scale by the Johns Hopkins University Science and Engineering Center in the United States. However, the latter is the only source of data for the graphs of this news since August 2021. However, the information from this body is periodically checked with official sources to ensure its accuracy.
To reduce the inconsistency of the data pending consolidation, the curves of cases, countries that have reported the most cases in the last 14 days and deaths only reach up to three days before the current date.
We use the definition of countries set by the United Nations: 193 countries, Palestine and the Vatican. Since last July, the graph of daily deaths per 100,000 inhabitants shows the countries that have registered at least 100 deaths and that are among the 15 most populous on each continent.
For its part, the table of COVID-19 cases and deaths in the world ranks the countries from highest to lowest cumulative incidence. To harmonize this measure in all latitudes, the definition of cases per 100,000 inhabitants notified in the last 14 days is used, the evolution of which can be seen in the graph that accompanies each territory. The variation of the incidence is calculated with respect to the period of 14 days immediately after that contemplated in the main indicator. Regarding deaths, the deaths reported in the last seven days and their rate per 100,000 inhabitants are shown with respect to the population of each country.
George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.