Global coronavirus tally surpasses 3.5 million amid underreporting concerns

WION Web Team
New Delhi, Delhi, India Published: May 04, 2020, 10:54 AM(IST)

File photo. Photograph:( AFP )

Story highlights

Globally, there were 74,779 new cases over the past 24 hours, taking total cases to around 3.52 million. Deaths related to COVID-19, the disease caused by the new virus, stood at 246,920. 

The total number of coronavirus cases across the globe surpassed 3.5 million on Monday and deaths neared a quarter of a million, according to a Reuters tally. Experts, however, have been fearing substantial underreporting even as the rate of fatalities and new cases slows down.

Globally, there were 74,779 new cases over the past 24 hours, taking total cases to around 3.52 million.

Deaths related to COVID-19, the disease caused by the new virus, stood at 246,920. 

While the number of new cases has come off a peak of 104,495 reported in a single day last week, it is still at around 75,000 to 90,000 cases per day globally.

North America and European countries still accounted for most of the new infections reported in recent days.

Also read | US will have coronavirus vaccine by end of year, says Trump

But case numbers have been rising from smaller bases in Latin America, Africa and Russia.

The 3.52 million compares with around 3 million to 5 million cases of severe illness caused annually by seasonal influenza, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO), but falls far short of the Spanish flu, which began in 1918 and infected an estimated 500 million people.

The mortality rate is also 10 times higher than for influenza in all age groups.

The first death was reported on January 10 in Wuhan, China, after the virus emerged there in December.

The daily rate of new cases worldwide has been sitting in a 2%-3% range over the past week, versus a peak of around 13% in mid-March, prompting many countries to begin easing lockdown measures that have upended businesses and crippled the global economy.

The loosening of restrictions has proved controversial, however, as experts debate the best strategy to ensure there is no large "second wave" outbreak.

In the United States, around half the country's state governors partially reopened their economies over the weekend, while others, including New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, declared the move was premature.

Also read | US to begin treating critically ill COVID-19 patients with Remdesivir

In Britain, Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who battled COVID-19 last month, said on Sunday the country was over the peak but it was still too early to relax lockdown measures.

Read in App