Coronavirus cases across the globe surpass 5 million

Coronavirus cases across the globe surpassed 5 million on Wednesday, with Latin America overtaking the US and Europe to report the largest portion of new daily cases, news wires reported. The development represents a new phase in the virus’ spread, which initially peaked in China in February, followed by large-scale outbreaks in Europe and the US.

Latin America accounted for around a third of the cases reported during the week, with Europe and the US each accounted for just over 20%. A large number of those new cases came from Brazil, which recently surpassed Germany, France and the UK to become the third-largest outbreak in the world, behind the United States and Russia. Cases in Brazil are now rising at a daily pace second only to the US.

At more than 5 million cases, the virus has infected more people in under six months than the annual total of severe flu cases, which the World Health Organisation estimates is around 3 million to 5 million globally. The pandemic has claimed over 326,000 lives, though the true number is thought to be higher as testing is still limited and many countries do not include fatalities outside of hospitals. Over half of the total fatalities have been recorded in Europe.

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