Coronavirus deaths pass 800,000 worldwide

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Coronavirus deaths pass 800,000 worldwide

Global coronavirus deaths hit the 800,000 mark on Saturday, according to a tally by the Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center, with nearly 23 million cases worldwide.

The US is the hardest hit country, accounting for almost 5.6 million cases and over 175,000 fatalities, followed by Brazil, Mexico, India and the UK per number of deaths.

The largest epicentre of the COVID-19 pandemic remains the Americas, accounting for over half of the global cases.

The pandemic could force 45 million people in Latin America and the Caribbean into poverty, 37% of the region’s population, the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) said.

The situation is deteriorating quickly in Argentina, where an outbreak in the disadvantaged province of Jujuy saw 30% of healthcare workers infected. Authorities fear the whole system could collapse.

Things do not look better in Asia. India has reported record daily infection rates for 18 days straight, while South Korea – once hailed for its successes in containing the virus – has been forced to shut nightclubs, churches and close beaches after reporting over 600 cases in the past two days.

  • India confirms 69,878 new infections – the fourth straight day above 60,000.
  • Joe Biden, the Democratic presidential nominee, said he would shut down the United States to contain its coronavirus outbreak if experts recommended such a measure. 
  • Brazil’s COVID-19 outbreak is stabilising and any reversal of the virus’s rampant spread in the vast country would be “a success for the world”, the World Health Organization said.
  • More than 23 million people have been diagnosed with COVID-19 around the world, and more than 14.7 million have recovered. At least 800,000 people have died, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.

France reports 3,602 new infections

The French health ministry reported 3,602 new coronavirus infections over the past 24 hours, a smaller rise than on Friday and after the increase in cases reached a post-lockdown high earlier in the week.

The ministry said the total number of coronavirus deaths in the country had risen by nine in the past 24 hours to 30,512.

The total number of confirmed infections in France now stands at 238,002, while the number of people in intensive care units was up by one, to 380. 

WHO says children aged 12 and over should wear masks like adults

The World Health Organization (WHO) said children aged 12 and over should wear masks to help tackle the COVID-19 pandemic under the same conditions as adults, while children between six and 11 should wear them on a risk-based approach.

Children aged 12 and over should particularly wear a mask when a one-metre distance from others cannot be guaranteed and there is widespread transmission in the area, the WHO and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) said in a document on the WHO website dated August 21.

Whether children between six and 11 should wear masks depends on several factors, including the intensity of transmission in the area, the child’s ability to use the mask, access to masks and adequate adult supervision, the two organisations said.

Children aged five years and under should not be required to wear masks based on the safety and overall interest of the child, the WHO and UNICEF said.

A girl is given a mask at a refugee camp located in Syria’s Jarablus [File: Anadolu]

Spike in Irish cases continues with 156 new infections

Ireland reported more than 100 daily COVID-19 cases for the fourth time in eight days after the health service was notified of 156 new infections and two additional deaths.

Ireland significantly tightened its nationwide coronavirus restrictions on Tuesday to try to rein in the new spike, which began in late July after cases had fallen to a daily average of around 20 for much of the previous two months.

The government lifted separate stricter measures in two counties on Friday but extended them for two more weeks in Kildare, where there were 36 cases. Dublin accounted for 55 cases with the rest spread across the country, similar to previous days. 

UK records 1,288 new cases – government data

The United Kingdom recorded 1,288 new cases of COVID-19, up from 1,033 a day earlier, government figures showed.

Eighteen people died after testing positive for the coronavirus within 28 days, up from two a day earlier.

The new cases were recorded as the government ramps up testing so it can suppress the spread of the virus and ease restrictions that have crippled the economy.

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