Covid-19 death toll unacceptably high: WHO

The Covid-19 weekly death toll of around 50,000 lives is unacceptably high, the World Health Organization said Friday as the one million fatalities landmark approaches.

The WHO said that although global death and infection rates from the new coronavirus were plateauing rather than rising exponentially, the worldwide figures were masking surges at lower regional and local levels.

The respiratory disease has killed nearly 947,000 people since the outbreak emerged in China last December, according to a tally from official sources compiled by AFP, while more than 30.2 million cases have been registered.

“We’re adding about 1.8 to two million cases per week to the global case count, and an average somewhere between 40,000 to 50,000 deaths,” WHO emergencies director Michael Ryan told a virtual news conference.

Geneva, Switzerland | AFP | Friday 9/19/2020 – 01:33 UTC+8 | 432 words

The Covid-19 weekly death toll of around 50,000 lives is unacceptably high, the World Health Organization said Friday as the one million fatalities landmark approaches.

The WHO said that although global death and infection rates from the new coronavirus were plateauing rather than rising exponentially, the worldwide figures were masking surges at lower regional and local levels.

The respiratory disease has killed nearly 947,000 people since the outbreak emerged in China last December, according to a tally from official sources compiled by AFP, while more than 30.2 million cases have been registered.

“We’re adding about 1.8 to two million cases per week to the global case count, and an average somewhere between 40,000 to 50,000 deaths,” WHO emergencies director Michael Ryan told a virtual news conference.

“Thankfully that is not rising exponentially. This is a hugely high figure to be settling at. That is not where we want to be.

“Even though those numbers are flat at a global level, that covers up the fact that at regional and sub-regional level in some countries, we’re seeing significant rises in cases.”

Ryan said the pandemic still had a “long way to burn” and though the proportion of infected people dying had dropped as treatment techniques improved, “we cannot accept 50,000 deaths a week as an acceptable number”. (AFP)

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