Updated: March 1, 2021
More than a half-million people have now died from COVID-19 worldwide from over 10 million infections, and the death toll has doubled over the past seven weeks, according to the latest tally by Johns Hopkins University.
The World Health Organization has been warning for weeks that the novel coronavirus pandemic was far from over and was accelerating in many parts of the world, including in the United States, Brazil, Russia and India.
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While the pandemic is still in its infancy but accelerating, health experts believe a second wave of the deadly virus may likely hit in the fall.
With over 2.5 million infections and more than 125,000 deaths, the United States continues to lead the world in the number of infections and fatalities.
Brazil ranks behind the United States in both infections and deaths, with 1.3 million confirmed cases and more than 57,000 fatalities.
In Sub-Saharan Africa, cases have been escalating in recent weeks. There are now more than 370,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the region and close to 10,000 deaths with South Africa accounting for over 30 percent of all the infections and about 23 percent of all fatalities, according to the Africa Center for Disease Control latest data. At least 178,407 people have fully recovered in Africa, the data show.
The pandemic has been accelerating in the United States in recent weeks, and some states, including Florida, Texas and Arizona, set new single-day records for infections Saturday.
Florida has now reported 20 percent of all new cases in the U.S. and Governor Greg Abbott of Texas on Friday signed an executive order imposing limits on some outdoor activities and social gatherings. Arizona reported 3,600 new cases Saturday and was ramping up the state’s hospital preparedness.