Worldwide coronavirus cases cross 30.2 million, death toll over 944,000
At least 30,203,663 people have been reported to be infected by the novel coronavirus globally and 944,421 people have died, a Reuters tally showed.
Infections have been reported in more than 210 countries and territories since the first cases were identified in China in December 2019.
The World Health Organization referred to the outbreak as a pandemic on March 11.
Global coronavirus cases exceeded 30 million on Thursday, a Reuters tally showed. India was firmly in focus as the latest epicentre, although North and South America combined still accounted for almost half of the global cases.
DEATHS AND INFECTIONS
At least 6,693,416 cases of the highly contagious novel coronavirus have been reported in the United States and its territories while at least 197,725 people have died, according to a Reuters tally of state and local government sources as of September 18, 2020, 1:01 pm. The US diagnosed its first COVID-19 case in Washington state on January 20.
Likewise, India follows the US with a total of 5,214,677 coronavirus cases with 84,372 death, according to Reuters’ interactive graphic tracking the global spread.
Likewise, Brazil has the third-highest 4,455,386 coronavirus cases while 134,935 people have died.
— Indonesia's capital plans to double its COVID-19 testing capacity in the near future, its governor told Reuters, as it fights surging infections that saw restrictions re-imposed to slow the spread and help hospitals to cope.
— Britain's government acknowledged problems in its COVID-19 testing system on Thursday as soaring demand met with worsening turnaround times and availability during a spike in infections.
— France registered a record 10,593 new confirmed coronavirus in the past 24 hours, health ministry data showed, the country's highest single-day count since the pandemic began.
— Hundreds of workers at COVID-19 laboratories in France went on strike, a trade union said, angry over poor working conditions as the coronavirus testing system buckles under huge demand.
— The Irish government tightened its COVID-19 travel restrictions by imposing quarantines on travellers from major holiday markets Italy and Greece, angering the country's dominant airlines Ryanair and Aer Lingus.
— The Czech Republic reported more than 2,000 new COVID-19 cases in a single day for the first time and tightened preventive measures after a surge in infections that is among the fastest in Europe.
— Austria is limiting private indoor gatherings to 10 people in the face of rising coronavirus infections, a day after Germany issued a travel warning for the Austrian capital.
— The major Canadian province of Ontario will clamp down on social gatherings in response to "reckless careless people" who are spreading the coronavirus at illegal parties.
— Several Latin American countries have informed the World Health Organization (WHO) they intend to request more time to sign up for its global COVID-19 vaccine allocation plan known as COVAX.
MIDDLE EAST AND AFRICA
— Israel closed its schools, a day before entering a second national coronavirus lockdown, as daily infections topped 4,500.
— The Namibian government said it will open up the country for international travel from Sept. 18 as it ends a six-month-long state of emergency with the average number of daily coronavirus cases trending downwards.
— If Moderna Inc's COVID-19 vaccine proves to be at least 70% effective, the company plans to seek emergency authorization for its use in high-risk groups, the company's chief executive told Reuters.
— CVS Health Corp said it plans to add more than 2,000 new COVID-19 drive-thru test sites at select CVS Pharmacy locations across the United States.
— The World Health Organisation said that more than 170 countries had joined its global plan to distribute vaccines fairly around the world, but cautioned that a race to develop shots could lead to public fears about safety.
— The Bank of England said it was looking more closely at how it might cut interest rates below zero as Britain's economy faces a triple whammy of rising COVID-19 cases, higher unemployment and a possible new Brexit shock.