First detected in Wuhan in December 2019, COVID-19- the novel coronavirus has affected 73 countries in the world. As of now, there are 90,892 confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus which has led to the death of 3,110 people. As there is no vaccine or specific antiviral medicine to deal to treat COVID-19, countries have been grappling with all possible mechanisms to contain its scope. So far, China, South Korea, Italy, and Iran have witnessed the most number of confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus.
With 80,303 cases of novel coronavirus accounting for 2,943 casualties, China is facing a big crisis. Wuhan, the capital of Hubei province has emerged as the epicentre of COVID-19. December 31, 2019, was the first occasion on which the Chinese authorities informed the World Health Organization about several cases of unusual pneumonia in Wuhan. On January 7, the new virus was identified and 4 days later, China announced its first death from COVID-19. The first case outside China was reported in Thailand on January 13. While the country reported 125 new cases of novel coronavirus on Tuesday, this was the lowest figure reported since the outbreak of the virus.
After South Korea confirmed 477 cases of COVID-19, the total number of infected people rose to 4,812. Daegu, a city located about 300 km southeast to Seoul has seen the maximum number of confirmed cases-3081. From February 19 to March 2, the nation has seen a rapid proliferation of the virus with 4,304 cases being reported. Since January 3, South Korea has tested more than 1,25,000 people out of which 85,484 have tested negative. On the other hand, the death toll has increased to 29.
The novel coronavirus has spread to more than half of Italy’s 20 regions with 2,036 confirmed cases. More than a thousand people including a councilor have tested positive in the Lombardy region, which is the worst-affected area in the country. Meanwhile, the death toll stands at 52. The economy has been badly affected with many airlines cancelling their flights to Italy and due to the lockdown of 11 towns in Lombardy and Veneto regions. Capital city Rome confirmed its first cases of COVID-19, that of a police officer and a firefighter.
The highest death toll due to COVID-19 outside China has been reported in Iran (77 deaths). On Tuesday, the Deputy Chairman of Parliament announced that 23 out of the 290 members of Parliament had tested positive for COVID-19. Overall, he noted that there had been 2,336 confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus. Earlier, Mohammad Mirmohammadi- an advisor to Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei died to the virus. Last week, the Deputy Health Minister also fell ill after contracting novel coronavirus. In the latest development, Khamenei has directed Iran’s Armed Forces to assist the Health Ministry in combating the spread of COVID-19.
India has taken several steps to combat the spread of COVID-19 which includes the screening of passengers at all main airports and seaports. Kerala recorded the first case of novel coronavirus when three students who had returned from Wuhan tested positive. On Monday, one confirmed case was reported in Delhi and Telangana each. Moreover, an Italian national quarantined in Jaipur has also contracted novel coronavirus. 6 more cases emerged in Agra on Tuesday. Furthermore, Air India declared that a passenger on the February 25 flight from Vienna to Delhi had tested positive. So far, no casualty has been reported pertaining to this virus.