From Our Bureau    

28TH JUNE 2020

The Corona Virus (COVID-19) pandemic situation remained grim globally, with the confirmed cases across the world soaring to 98,43,073 and the death toll reaching 4,95,760 in the 216 affected countries and territories, according to the latest update from the World Health Organization (WHO).

Globally, American region continued to be the worst-hit with 49,33,972 confirmed cases and 2,41,931 deaths. Europe came next with 26,56,437 confirmed cases and 1,96,541 deaths. Eastern Mediterranean region reported 10,24,222 confirmed cases and 23,449 deaths.

South-East Asia region’s tally stood at 7,35,854 confirmed cases and 20,621 deaths. Western Pacific region recorded 2,13,032 confirmed cases and 7,420 deaths and African region registered 2,78,815 confirmed cases and 5,785 deaths. WHO Risk Assessment at global level remained very high.

Today, WHO reported a record number of new cases in the last 24 hours globally (1,89,077 cases), with several countries reporting their highest number of new cases in a 24-hour period. As WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus remarked in his media briefing on 24th June, “Even as we continue research into vaccines and therapeutics, we have an urgent responsibility to do everything we can with the tools we have now to suppress transmission and save lives.” WHO has recently updated guidance on critical actions countries can take.

Planes carrying more than 4.7 million items of personal protective equipment, procured by WHO/Europe with funding from the European Union, have landed in Azerbaijan, Belarus and Ukraine over the last two days. The essential protective equipment will help health-care workers in the three countries respond effectively and safely to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The phenomenon of an ‘infodemic’ has escalated to a level that requires a coordinated response. An infodemic is an overabundance of information–some accurate and some not–occurring during an epidemic. WHO is holding its first Infodemiology Conference, with a public conference on 29 June followed by a scientific conference from 30th June through16th July. (eom)

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