Italy with 1,10,574 detected cases has the highest number of fatalities with 13,155 deaths (Photo Credit: Pixabay)
There are more than 9,00,000 confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus worldwide since the pandemic emerged in China late last year, according to an AFP tally. According to the tally compiled using official sources, at least 9,05,589 COVID-19 infections including 45,719 deaths, have been recorded in 187 countries and territories globally at 1900 GMT on Wednesday (00.30 IST on Thursday).
Out of these the United States has 2,03,608 cases with 4,476 deaths. Italy with 1,10,574 detected cases has the highest number of fatalities with 13,155 deaths. Spain has 102,136 cases including 9,053 deaths and China has 81,554 cases and 3,312 deaths.
Menawhile, the World Health Organization said Wednesday it was deeply concerned about the near-exponential escalation of the new coronavirus pandemic, with the number of deaths doubling in a week. WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus urged citizens around the globe to stand together to fight COVID-19, as he braced for the millionth confirmed case.
"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," he 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," he said.
The virus is expected to gain a greater foothold in parts of the world that have not, so far, seen such large numbers of cases and deaths. "While relatively lower numbers of confirmed cases have been reported from Africa, and from Central and South America, we realise that COVID-19 could have serious social, economic and political consequences for these regions," Tedros warned.
"It is critical that we ensure these countries are well equipped to detect, test, isolate and treat COVID-19 cases, and identify contacts."
He urged governments to implement social welfare measures to ensure that vulnerable people have access to food during the crisis -- and called for debt relief for poorer states.
"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.
He said there were many "unknowns" about how COVID-19 will behave, as it is the "first-ever coronavirus pandemic in the world".
A safe vaccine is thought to be 12 to 18 months away, while WHO emergencies director Michael Ryan stressed: "There is no therapy that has been proven to be effective in the treatment of COVID-19."