Health March 24, 2020
ROUNDUP: More than one fifth of the world in lockdown 

By Fabian Sutch-Daggett - World Healthcare Journal

Nearly 400,000 people across the world have now contracted Covid-19, and around 20 per cent of the world is now in lockdown, following the UK’s announcement of heightened restrictions on all public activity yesterday. This percentage is set to greatly increase as India announces a total lockdown on the nation at midnight tonight. Here are the latest Covid-19 updates from around the world: 

  • US President Donald Trump has announced his intention to reopen the country “very soon” despite the WHO officials warning that the US could become the new epicentre of the Covid-19 pandemic if trends continue. President Trump’s announcement came as confirmed coronavirus cases have now soared past 46,000 in the nation, with more than 25,000 cases in New York State alone.

  • China has announced it will lift the lockdown in Hubei province, where the coronavirus pandemic began three months ago. Hubei has been in a state of full lockdown for almost two months, but Chinese authorities will partially lift the shutdown at midnight tonight after cases around the nation have continued to decrease. However, restrictions will remain in place for the hardest-hit city of Wuhan until at least April 8th.

  • Italy has reported a large increase in deaths around the country, breaking the trend over the past two days of the death rate beginning to decrease. 783 deaths were reported today, bringing the current death toll up to 6,820. The Italian government is now considering tougher penalties for lockdown violators, with fines potentially being raised to as high as €3000 and car seizures enacted.

  • Spanish healthcare workers are desperate for more vital medical equipment after the death toll in the nation jumped by 514 in a single day. 2,800 people have now died from the virus in Spain, and close to 40,000 are infected – a large portion of whom are healthcare workers. This comes as Spanish Deputy PM Carmen Calvo has been hospitalized with respiratory issues, and is waiting on test results for Covid-19. Additionally, two further relatives of PM Pedro Sanchez have now tested positive for the virus.

  • India will enter total lockdown from midnight tonight after PM Narendra Modi addressed the nation earlier today, announcing a 3-week ban on all travel outside of the home - barring only delivery of essential items. “To save India and every Indian, there will be a total ban on venturing out of your homes,” said PM Modi, adding that anyone who ventures out of their home during the 21-day shutdown risks “setting India back 21 years. ” 

  • The UK has announced the establishment of a 4,000-bed hospital in London at the ExCeL in East London. The “NHS Nightingale” hospital is set to open next week, comprising two wards each of 2,000 beds. This followed the announcement that more than 11,500 retired clinicians are set to return to the NHS to help tackle the crisis, and more than 18,000 medical students will join the workforce.

  • Brazil’s President Jair Bolsonaro has accused the media and political opponents of “tricking” Brazilian citizens about the coronavirus, claiming “hysteria” over what he refers to as a “little flu”. Bolsonaro attacked the governors of Rio De Janeiro and São Paolo on television yesterday, both of whom have imposed quarantines on their cities. This comes as Brazil has now recorded 1,980 cases of the virus and 34 deaths.

To stay up to date on the latest coronavirus developments, please look at our dedicated news sections on Covid-19: 

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