Toks David, Lagos
As the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) cuts a trail of death across the globe, Italy has become the new epicentre of the deadly virus – first noticed in Wuhan, China – which has seen, by the latest count, 6,820 deaths from a global total of 18,580 deaths in 416,774 cases around the world.
The small European country accounts for almost double the number of deaths in China, which has recorded 3,277 deaths from over eighty thousand cases, compared with Italy’s 69,176 cases.
The country is struggling to cope with over fifty-four thousand active cases, 3,393 of which are serious or critical condition – a situation that has strained the Italian healthcare system to its limits, even with medical aid coming from China.
While Italy is managing its crisis with a national lockdown, the United States – with a patchwork of states taking serious to mild measures to contain the spread of the virus with the full support of the federal government – is the country with the current highest number of new cases – at over 9,000 – with Italy coming a close second with its 5,249 new cases. At over seven hundred (743), Italy surpassed Spain on Tuesday as the country with the highest number of new deaths.
Of all the countries managing recovery, China outstrips the rest of the world with a staggering 73,159 total recoveries, with only Iran coming a distant second with 8,913 total recovered as of Tuesday night.
The pandemic is far from over, and there are indications that China itself may be going through a new cycle of fresh cases and deaths since it peaked and cratered weeks ago.
More countries, meanwhile, are taking hard lockdown measures to contain the spread of the virus, with India being the latest, as Prime Minister Narendra Modi ordered a nationwide lockdown for 21 days starting at midnight.
Nigeria’s number of COVID-19 cases currently is in its low forties (44 by the latest NCDC update), but the incline of new cases is steeply rising (with at least 2 new cases per day), a little under a month since the country recorded its first case. Only one death has been reported so far, a drop in a bucket of blood that is Italy, China and Spain (2,800 deaths).
To put this all in perspective, of the worldwide 416,774 reported cases of the virus, 108,300 have recovered or have been discharged, which amounts to a 26 per cent recovery rate.