New coronavirus cases across the world jump by the most in a single day, WHO says

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Samu Emergency Services from Santo Andre, in the Brazilian SP state, work in the rescue of the Covid-19 patient, May 5th. Brazil has reached 16.850 deaths by the new coronavirus this Monday, May 19th, and more than 255.000 have been infected.

Gustavo Basso | NurPhoto | Getty Images

The number of newly reported coronavirus cases worldwide hit a daily record this week with  more than 100,000 new cases over the last 24 hours, according to the World Health Organization.

Almost two-thirds of the cases were reported in just four countries, WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said during a press conference Wednesday at the agency’s Geneva headquarters. “We still have a long way to go in this pandemic.” 

There are now close to 5 million global cases and roughly 325,000 deaths since the virus emerged in Wuhan, China more than four months ago, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

WHO has been warning world leaders that there can be “no going back to business as usual” following the Covid-19 outbreak, which has upended economies and wreaked havoc on nearly every country across the globe.

The agency has told countries that they will need to manage around the coronavirus for the foreseeable future as cases level off or decline in some countries, while peaking in others and resurging in areas where the Covid-19 pandemic appeared to be under control.

While social distancing measures put in place in numerous countries to slow the spread of the coronavirus have been successful, the virus remains “extremely dangerous,” WHO officials have said. Current data show “most of the world’s population remains susceptible,” they said, meaning outbreaks can easily “reignite.”

This is a developing story. Please check back for updates. 

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