COVID-19 pandemic

Pandemic caused by SARS-CoV-2

The COVID-19 pandemic, also called the coronavirus pandemic, is a world-wide pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). It is caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2).[1][7][b]

COVID‑19 pandemic
Confirmed cases per 100,000 population
as of 20 November 2022
  •   >10%
  •   3–10%
  •   1–3%
  •   0.3–1%
  •   0.1–0.3%
  •   0.03–0.1%
  •   0–0.3%
  •   None or no data
Cases per country
Total confirmed cases per country
as of 20 November 2022
  •   10,000,000+
  •   1,000,000–9,999,999
  •   100,000–999,999
  •   10,000–99,999
  •   1,000–9,999
  •   100–999
  •   1–99
  •   None or no data
Deaths per capita
Confirmed deaths per 100 population date shown on map
  •   100+
  •   10–100
  •   1–10
  •   0.1–1
  •   0–0.1
  •   None or no data
A nurse caring for a patient with COVID‑19 in an intensive care unit
Taiwanese 33rd Chemical Corps spraying disinfectant on a street in Taipei, Taiwan
Burial in Hamadan, Iran
Workers unloading boxes of medical supplies at Villamor Air Base
Clockwise, starting from top:
  • A nurse caring for a COVID‑19 patient in an intensive care unit aboard a U.S. hospital ship
  • Disinfection vehicles in Taiwan
  • Donated medical supplies being received in the Philippines
  • Burial in Iran
  • The Italian government's outbreak task force
DiseaseCoronavirus disease 2019 (COVID‑19)
Virus strainSevere acute respiratory syndrome
coronavirus 2
(SARS‑CoV‑2)[a]
SourceProbably bats, possibly via pangolins[2][3]
LocationWorldwide
First outbreakWuhan, Hubei, China[4]
Index caseXiaogan, Hubei, China
30°37′11″N 114°15′28″E / 30.61972°N 114.25778°E / 30.61972; 114.25778
Date17 November 2019 (2019-11-17)–5 May 2023[4][5]
Confirmed cases774,954,379[6]
Deaths
7,040,264[6]

The disease was first found in Wuhan, Hubei, China, in December 2019. On 31 December, Chinese health authorities told the World Health Organization (WHO)about a group of viral pneumonia cases of unknown cause,[8][9] and an investigation was launched in early January 2020.[10] The virus is believed to have come from an animal source, possibly a bat, and it is thought to have been transmitted to humans at a live meat market in Wuhan where live animals were being sold. The virus quickly spread to other parts of the world by airplanes and ships, because of its highly infectious nature and ease of transmission. The World Health Organization (WHO) called it a pandemic (global disease) on 11 March 2020.[11]The International Committee on Taxonomy of Viruses gave the virus its name. As of 31 March 2024, about 774,000,000 cases of COVID-19 have been reported, and about 7,040,000 people have died of COVID-19.[6]

The virus mostly spreads when people are close to each other, which is why social distancing is used.[12] Common symptoms include fever, cough, and trouble breathing.[13] The illness can worsen with pneumonia and acute respiratory distress syndrome.[14] As of January 2021, a number of vaccines for COVID-19 have been developed, but only a few have been found safe to use. The first vaccine to be approved was created by Pfizer and BioNTech,[15] followed by the Oxford / AstraZeneca [16] vaccine. Vaccine distribution was started in many countries in Europe, North America, South America and Asia.[17] The United Kingdom was the first western country to begin to give out a COVID-19 vaccine. [18] The vaccine was given out to all people in the country for free. No antiviral medicine for COVID-19 is available.[19] Doctors usually give patients supportive therapy instead such as giving fluids, food, oxygen, pain relief and other treatments designed to help patients deal with the symptoms.[20] People can avoid spreading the virus by regularly washing their hands, covering their mouth when coughing, maintaining distance from other people, staying away from crowds, wearing medical or cloth face coverings, and being alone for people who think they are infected, also known as quarantining.[19]

The outbreak might be from a coronavirus that usually lives in bats. This then likely infected another animal, possibly a pangolin. It then changed inside that other animal until it could infect humans.[21] It possibly originated at a wet market (a live food animal market), Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market.[22] A 55-year-old person from Hubei province was the first human to contract the virus on November 17, 2019.[23] A 61-year-old man who was a regular customer at the market was the first person to die from the virus on January 11, 2020.[24] The exact origin of the virus is still unknown since the market in Wuhan sold a variety of live wild animals in cages. Chinese tourists have spread the virus by traveling to other countries and made it a worldwide pandemic.[25]

Racism and xenophobia against Chinese people and Asians increased during the pandemic.

In November 2020, two companies, Pfizer and Moderna, said they had finished making COVID-19 vaccines. Two mRNA vaccines, one by Pfizer and one by Moderna, have been tested. Both were over 90% effective.[26] Countries began planning to give the vaccine to many people.[27][28][29] 25 other vaccines have been approved by at least one country, and many others are being developed.

The United States has had the most deaths from the virus. Over 1 million Americans have died from the virus.[6]

In March 2020, the companies belonging to Sistema allocated about 1 billion rubles for the fight against coronavirus, the bulk of which was spent on the development of tests to detect infection, as well as on the production of protective equipment and antiseptics.[30][31]

In May 2023 the WHO announced the end of the pandemic.

Video summary (script) on the coronavirus disease (4:12 min)

Epidemiology change

Background change

On 31 December 2019, Chinese health authorities reported to the World Health Organization (WHO) a cluster of viral pneumonia cases of unknown cause in Wuhan,[8][9] and an investigation was launched in early January 2020.[10]

On 9 June 2020, a Harvard University study suggested that COVID-19 may have been spreading in China as early as August 2019, based on hospital car park usage and web search trends.[32]

Cases change

Cases means the number of people who have been tested for COVID-19 and have tested positive.[33] These cases are according to Johns Hopkins University.

Deaths change

 
Deceased in a 16 m (53 ft) "mobile morgue" outside a hospital in Hackensack, New Jersey in April 2020

Almost all people who get COVID-19 recover. For those who do not, the time between the start of symptoms and death usually ranges from 6 to 41 days, but most of the time about 14 days.[34] This data are recorded by the WHO.

Signs & Symptoms change

 
Symptoms of COVID-19. There are reports that even people who do not show symptoms can spread it.[35]

According to the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, COVID-19 makes people feel sick in different ways, but it usually affects the lungs. People usually cough and have difficulty breathing. They often also have a fever, chills, headache, pain in their muscles, or trouble tasting or smelling things,[36] which can often be confused with the flu virus.[37]

According to an April 2020 study by the American Gastroenterological Association, COVID-19 can make sick people vomit or have diarrhea, but this is rare. They said about 7.7% of COVID-19 patients vomited, about 7.8% had diarrhea and about 3.6% had pain in their stomachs.[38]

Treatment change

Since there is no exact cure for Covid-19, treatment has focused on treating the symptoms of the disease such as giving oxygen and using machines to aid breathing, giving pain killers to relieve pain, supportive treatment such as giving fluids, food and drugs to combat other symptoms and diseases that affect the person at the same time. Doctors have tried different medicines to see if they help in treatment such as colchicine, systemic corticosteroids (particularly dexamethasone), interleukin-6 receptor antagonists (such as tocilizumab), and Janus kinase inhibitors (such as baricitinib) have been seen to reduce mortality and have other benefits in patients with severe covid-19, such as reducing the severity of the disease and reducing the length of hospital stay.

Data change

Updated March 31, 2024.
COVID-19 pandemic by location[39]
Location Cases Deaths
  World[c] 774,954,379 7,040,264
  European Union[d] 185,596,049 1,260,605
  United States 103,436,829 1,182,424
  China[e] 99,343,195 122,046
  India 45,032,655 533,521
  France 38,997,490 167,985
  Germany 38,437,756 174,979
  Brazil 37,519,960 702,116
  South Korea 34,571,873 35,934
  Japan 33,803,572 74,694
  Italy 26,717,246 196,816
  United Kingdom 24,911,885 232,112
  Russia 24,031,776 402,374
  Turkey 17,004,681 101,419
  Spain 13,980,340 121,852
  Australia 11,812,024 24,894
  Vietnam 11,624,000 43,206
  Argentina 10,095,225 130,608
  Taiwan 9,970,937 17,672
  Netherlands 8,635,672 22,986
  Mexico 7,702,809 334,958
  Iran 7,627,186 146,811
  Indonesia 6,828,884 162,056
  Poland 6,661,489 120,694
  Colombia 6,384,097 142,727
  Austria 6,081,287 22,534
  Portugal 5,642,999 28,122
  Greece 5,626,890 38,970
  Ukraine 5,532,818 109,920
  Chile 5,343,520 61,769
  Malaysia 5,276,312 37,348
  Belgium 4,860,586 34,339
  Israel 4,841,558 12,707
  Canada 4,785,855 54,492
  Thailand 4,768,647 34,576
  Czech Republic 4,758,766 43,498
  Peru 4,524,748 220,831
  Switzerland 4,452,907 14,188
  Philippines 4,140,383 66,864
  South Africa 4,072,636 102,595
  Romania 3,525,696 68,704
  Denmark 3,434,511 9,631
  Singapore 3,006,155 2,024
  Hong Kong 2,876,106 13,466
  Sweden 2,751,264 27,240
  Serbia 2,583,470 18,057
  New Zealand 2,499,815 3,882
  Iraq 2,465,545 25,375
  Hungary 2,230,249 49,048
  Bangladesh 2,049,155 29,492
  Slovakia 1,877,633 21,224
  Georgia 1,862,085 17,132
  Jordan 1,746,997 14,122
  Republic of Ireland 1,734,839 9,560
  Pakistan 1,580,631 30,656
  Norway 1,507,093 5,732
  Kazakhstan 1,503,687 19,072
  Finland 1,499,712 11,466
  Lithuania 1,365,371 9,801
  Slovenia 1,355,814 10,042
  Bulgaria 1,329,041 38,696
  Croatia 1,309,728 18,687
  Morocco 1,279,006 16,304
  Puerto Rico 1,252,713 5,938
  Guatemala 1,250,295 20,200
  Lebanon 1,239,904 10,947
  Costa Rica 1,230,653 9,368
  Bolivia 1,198,018 22,384
  Tunisia 1,153,361 29,423
  Cuba 1,115,043 8,530
  Ecuador 1,068,532 36,032
  United Arab Emirates 1,067,030 2,349
  Panama 1,039,444 8,671
  Uruguay 1,037,893 7,625
  Mongolia 1,011,503 2,284
  Nepal 1,003,450 12,031
  Belarus 994,037 7,118
  Latvia 977,701 7,465
  Saudi Arabia 841,469 9,646
  Azerbaijan 835,219 10,353
  Paraguay 735,759 19,880
  Palestine 703,228 5,708
  Bahrain 696,614 1,536
  Cyprus 681,110 1,365
  Sri Lanka 672,751 16,897
  Kuwait 667,165 2,570
  Dominican Republic 661,103 4,384
  Myanmar 641,895 19,494
  Moldova 635,245 12,224
  Estonia 610,226 2,997
  Venezuela 552,695 5,856
  Egypt 516,023 24,830
  Qatar 514,524 690
  Libya 507,269 6,437
  Ethiopia 501,157 7,574
  Réunion 494,595 921
  Honduras 472,783 11,114
  Armenia 451,831 8,777
  Bosnia and Herzegovina 403,603 16,387
  Oman 399,449 4,628
  Luxembourg 391,229 1,000
  North Macedonia 350,573 9,976
  Zambia 349,404 4,069
  Kenya 344,094 5,689
  Brunei 343,653 178
  Albania 334,863 3,605
  Botswana 330,638 2,801
  Mauritius 327,256 1,070
  Kosovo 274,279 3,212
  Algeria 272,010 6,881
  Nigeria 267,188 3,155
  Zimbabwe 266,359 5,740
  Montenegro 251,280 2,654
  Mozambique 233,765 2,252
  Afghanistan 232,403 7,982
  Martinique 230,354 1,104
  Laos 218,955 671
  Iceland 209,913 186
  Guadeloupe 203,235 1,021
  El Salvador 201,813 4,230
  Trinidad and Tobago 191,496 4,390
  Maldives 186,694 316
  Uzbekistan 175,081 1,016
  Namibia 172,399 4,106
  Uganda 172,149 3,632
  Ghana 171,839 1,462
  Jamaica 156,797 3,595
  Cambodia 139,097 3,056
  Rwanda 133,218 1,468
  Cameroon 125,137 1,974
  Malta 121,404 904
  Barbados 108,075 593
  Angola 107,327 1,937
  Democratic Republic of the Congo 99,338 1,468
  French Guiana 98,041 413
  Malawi 89,168 2,686
  Senegal 89,056 1,971
  Kyrgyzstan 88,953 1,024
  Ivory Coast 88,384 835
  Suriname 82,496 1,405
  New Caledonia 80,064 314
  French Polynesia 79,254 650
  Eswatini 75,191 1,427
  Guyana 73,947 1,300
  Belize 70,808 688
  Fiji 69,047 885
  Madagascar 68,490 1,426
  Jersey 66,391 161
  Cabo Verde 64,474 417
  Sudan 63,993 5,046
  Mauritania 63,848 997
  Bhutan 62,697 21
  Syria 57,423 3,163
  Burundi 54,565 15
  Guam 52,287 419
  Seychelles 51,656 172
  Gabon 49,051 307
  Andorra 48,015 159
  Papua New Guinea 46,864 670
  Curaçao 45,883 305
  Aruba 44,224 292
  Tanzania 43,223 846
  Mayotte 42,027 187
  Togo 39,528 290
  Guinea 38,572 468
  Bahamas 38,084 844
  Isle of Man 38,008 116
  Lesotho 36,138 709
  Guernsey 35,326 67
  Faroe Islands 34,658 28
  Haiti 34,298 860
  Mali 33,164 743
  Cayman Islands 31,472 37
  Saint Lucia 30,073 409
  Benin 28,036 163
  Somalia 27,334 1,361
  Federated States of Micronesia 26,547 65
  Solomon Islands 25,954 199
  United States Virgin Islands 25,389 132
  San Marino 25,292 126
  Republic of the Congo 25,215 389
  Timor-Leste 23,460 138
  Burkina Faso 22,109 400
  Liechtenstein 21,574 89
  Gibraltar 20,550 113
  Grenada 19,693 238
  Bermuda 18,860 165
  South Sudan 18,819 147
  Tajikistan 17,786 125
  Monaco 17,181 67
  Equatorial Guinea 17,130 183
  Samoa 16,962 31
  Tonga 16,950 12
  Marshall Islands 16,138 17
  Dominica 15,760 74
  Nicaragua 15,733 245
  Djibouti 15,690 189
  Central African Republic 15,440 113
  Northern Mariana Islands 14,341 41
  Gambia 12,626 372
Template:Country data Collectivity of Saint Martin Collectivity of Saint Martin 12,324 46
  Vanuatu 12,019 14
  Greenland 11,971 21
  Yemen 11,945 2,159
  Caribbean Netherlands 11,922 41
  Sint Maarten 11,051 92
  Eritrea 10,189 103
  Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 9,674 124
  Guinea-Bissau 9,614 177
  Niger 9,515 315
  Comoros 9,109 160
  Antigua and Barbuda 9,106 146
  American Samoa 8,359 34
  Liberia 7,930 294
  Sierra Leone 7,779 125
  Chad 7,698 194
  British Virgin Islands 7,392 64
  Cook Islands 7,203 2
  Turks and Caicos Islands 6,750 40
  Sao Tome and Principe 6,736 80
  Saint Kitts and Nevis 6,607 46
  Palau 6,265 9
  Saint Barthélemy 5,507 5
  Nauru 5,393 1
  Kiribati 5,085 24
  Anguilla 3,904 12
  Wallis and Futuna 3,550 8
  Macau 3,514 121
  Saint Pierre and Miquelon 3,426 2
  Tuvalu 2,943 1
  Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha 2,166
  Falkland Islands 1,923
  Montserrat 1,403 8
  Niue 993
  Tokelau 80 0
  Vatican City 26 0
  Pitcairn Islands 4
  North Korea 1 6
  Turkmenistan 0 0
  1. In summary, this article is about the coronavirus pandemic, which is caused by the disease COVID‑19, which is caused by the virus SARS‑CoV‑2.[1]
  2. To summarize, this article is about the pandemic, which is caused by the disease COVID-19, which is caused by the virus SARS-CoV-2.
  3. Countries which do not report data for a column are not included in that column's world total.
  4. Data on member states of the European Union are individually listed, but are also summed here for convenience. They are not double-counted in world totals.
  5. Does not include special administrative regions (Hong Kong and Macau) or Taiwan.


Name change

In February 2020, the WHO announced a name for the disease caused by SARS-CoV-2: COVID-19. It replaced the name "2019-nCoV."[40] "Covi" is for "coronavirus," "D" for "disease," and "19" for the year 2019 – the year it was first detected. They said they did not want the name to have any person, place, or animal in it because people might blame the disease on that place, person, or animal. For example, it did not use the word "Wuhan." They also wanted the name to be easy to say out loud.[41]

Mortality rate of COVID-19 change

 
The current death rate of COVID-19

According to an article in Market Watch dated on February 27, 2020, the overall case mortality rate in China was 2.3%. However, these results might be severely different between different age groups and between men and women. People over the age of 70 experienced a rate of mortality 4-5 times that of the average. Men were more likely to die than women (2.8% versus 1.7% for women) possibly due to lifestyle, such as it being more possible in men to drink and smoke, making the risk of having a respiratory illness more possible, and thus more vulnerable.[42] These numbers were the conclusion of a study by the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention using 72,314 COVID-19 cases in mainland China as of Feb. 11. At that point this was the largest sample of cases for such a study.[43]

On March 5, 2020, the WHO released the case fatality rate.[44]

Race and racism change

COVID-19 did not affect everyone in each country the same way.[45] As of May 2020, APM Research Lab said the death rate among black Americans was 2.4 times as high as for white Americans and 2.2 times as high as for Latino and Asian Americans.[46] In July 2020, The New York Times printed data from the Centers for Disease Control showing that black and Latino Americans were three times as likely to become sick and twice as likely to die as white Americans. This was not only in large cities but also in rural areas. This was not only for old people but for people in all age groups. Native Americans were also more likely than whites to become sick and die. Asian Americans were 1.3 times as likely as whites to become sick.[47]

Camara Jones, an epidemiologist who once worked for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said this was socioeconomic and not because of any natural difference in black and white people's bodies.[48] In the United States, black citizens are more likely to work jobs where they serve the public directly and to ride on public transport rather than take their own cars to work. This makes them more likely to be infected than people who work in private offices or from home. Sharrelle Barber, an epidemiologist and biostatistician from Drexel University, also said black Americans can live in crowded neighborhoods where social distancing is harder to do and healthy food harder to find.[49] Both Barber and Jones blamed the long history of racism in the United States for these things. Three senators, Kamala Harris, Cory Booker and Elizabeth Warren said the federal government should start recording the race of COVID-19 patients so scientists could study this problem.[49]

In June, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) told the public that people using the United States' government's Medicare health program had different results depending on race. Four times as many black Medicare patients went to hospitals for COVID-19 than white Medicare patients. There were twice as many hospitalized Hispanic patients than white patients. There were three hospitalized Asian patients for every two hospitalized white patients. The head of CMS, Seema Verma, said this was mostly because of socioeconomic status.[50]

In the United Kingdom, twice as many black COVID-19 patients died as white COVID-19 patients. Other non-white people, like people from India and Bangladesh, were also more likely to die of COVID-19 than whites. Britain's Office of National Statistics said that the differences in money and education explained some of this difference but not all of it. They also said they did not know whether non-white patients caught COVID-19 more often or whether they caught more severe cases. Only female Chinese Britons were less likely to die of COVID-19 than white Britons.[51]

Indigenous peoples change

Native Americans in the United States have shown more deaths from COVID-19 than the rest of the U.S.[52] As of May, the Navajo Nation had 88 deaths and 2,757 cases, and the money they had been promised by the government arrived several weeks late. Only 30% of the people in the Navajo Nation have pipes with running water, which made it difficult for people to wash their hands.[53]

Scientists from Chapman University made a plan to protect the Tsimane people in Bolivia from COVID-19 and said this plan would also work for other indigenous peoples living on their own land. The scientists said that many indigenous peoples have problems that make COVID-19 more dangerous for them, like poverty, less clean water, and other lung diseases. Hospitals may be a long distance away, and racism can affect the way doctors and nurses react. But they also sometimes have things that help, like traditions of making decisions together and the ability to grow food nearby.[52] The scientists found people who spoke the Tsimane language as a first language and made teams to go to Tsimane towns to warn them about COVID-19. They also used radio stations. They said the best plan was for whole communities to decide to isolate. They found this worked well because the Tsimane already usually made their big decisions together as a community in special meetings and already had a tradition of quarantining new mothers. The Chapman scientists said their plan would also work for other indigenous peoples who also make decisions together, like the Tsimane. [52][54] The Waswanipi Cree in Canada, the Mapoon people in Australia, and many groups in South America already tried plans like these on their own.[52][55]

George Floyd protests change

In May 2020, police officers in Minneapolis, Minnesota killed an unarmed black man called George Floyd while they were arresting him. There were weeks of protests all over the world against police brutality and racism. Experts said they were worried protesters and police could spread SARS-CoV-2 to each other. Other experts said some of the reasons that the protests were so big was because non-white people were being killed by COVID-19 more than white people were, because poor leadership in the COVID-19 crisis reminded them of poor leadership about racism, and because the lockdowns shut down workplaces and other things. This meant people had more time to protest.[55][56][57][58]

African Americans change

African Americans are more likely to catch the virus compared to their white counterparts in the United States,[59] and are also more likely to die from it.[60][61] 50,000 African Americans died of COVID-19 in 2020.[62] African Americans are the least likely to get vaccinated against the disease.[63]

Hispanics change

Latinos have been at a higher risk of hospitalization or death from COVID-19 in the United States.[64] There are many reasons why Latinos have a higher risk of getting very sick or going to the hospital because of COVID-19. One reason is that they often have health problems like diabetes, obesity, and heart disease. They are also more likely to have jobs where they have to be around other people, like in healthcare, grocery stores, and farming. Many Latinos live in crowded places with many people, like big families or busy neighborhoods. This makes it hard to stay far away from others and can make the virus spread more easily. Some Latinos might not speak English well, which can make it hard to get healthcare or understand how to stay healthy. Finally, many Latinos don't have health insurance or don't have enough of it. All of these things are connected and can make it more likely for Latinos to get very sick from COVID-19.

Conspiracy theories change

In early 2020, some people began to think that the SARS-CoV-2 may have been made on purpose in a laboratory and either released by accident or on purpose like a weapon. Some Iranians thought the Americans might have made it.[65] Chinese state media said COVID-19 came from the United States to China and not the other way around.[66] Some Americans thought the Chinese might have made it.[67] Some Britons thought it might have been created by accident by 5G cell phone networks.[68]

On March 17, 2020, scientists from Columbia University and other places published a paper in Nature Medicine showing that SARS-CoV-2 was almost surely not made by humans in a laboratory. They did this by comparing the genomes of different viruses to each other.[21] The scientists saw that SARS-CoV-2 did not match any of the viral backbones that already exist for virologists to use.[69] Within a few weeks, it became one of the most cited scientific papers in history, meaning that other scientists were reading and using it.

There were also several conspiracy theories circulating about Bill Gates and his alleged involvement with the COVID-19 pandemic. Theories wrongfully linking Gates to the coronavirus were mentioned 1.2 million times on television or social media between February and April of 2020.[70] One of the most prominent ones was that Bill Gates somehow created or engineered the virus as part of a plan to depopulate the world. There is no evidence to support this claim, and it has been debunked by numerous experts in the field and fact checking organizations including the the National Institutes of Health[71] and Reuters.[72] Some conspiracy theorists allege that Bill Gates is using the pandemic to profit from the development and distribution of vaccines and other medical treatments. While Gates has been heavily involved in funding research on vaccines and treatments for COVID-19, he has not personally profited from this work. In fact, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has donated over $2 billion to COVID-19 efforts since the start of the pandemic.[73][74]

One of the impacts of these conspiracy theories is that they have generated fear and suspicion towards COVID-19 vaccines.[75] Bill Gates commented on the impact of these theories, saying: "During the pandemic, there were tens of millions of messages that I intentionally caused it, or I'm tracking people. It's true I'm involved with vaccines, but I'm involved with vaccines to save lives."[76]

Graphs change

Timelines of COVID-19 change

 
Map of national and subnational lockdowns on 29 November 2020
  Current national lockdown
  Current subnational lockdown
  Former national lockdown
  Former subnational lockdown
  No lockdown or no data

On December 31, 2019, China alerted WHO to several cases of unusual pneumonia in Wuhan, Hubei province.[79]

On January 20, 2020, Chinese premier Li Keqiang called for efforts to stop and control the pneumonia epidemic caused by a novel coronavirus.[80] As of February 5, 2020, 24,588 cases have been confirmed,[81][82] including in every province-level division of China.[81] A larger number of people may have been infected, but not detected (especially mild cases).[83][84] The first local transmission of the virus outside China occurred in Vietnam between family members,[85] while the first local transmission not involving family occurred in Germany, on January 22, when a German man contracted the disease from a Chinese business visitor at a meeting.[86] As of 5 February 2020, 493 deaths have been attributed to the virus since the first confirmed death on January 9, with 990 recoveries.[81][87] The first death outside China was reported in the Philippines, in a 44-year-old Chinese male on February 1.[88] but another source reported: "The first cases of COVID-19 outside of China were identified on January 13 in Thailand and on January 16 in Japan".[89]

There has been testing which have showed over 6000 confirmed cases in China,[90] some of whom are healthcare workers.[91][92]

Confirmed cases have also been reported in Thailand, South Korea, Japan, Taiwan, Macau, Hong Kong, the United States (Everett, Washington and Chicago),[92] Singapore,[93] Vietnam,[94] France[95] and Nepal.[96]

The World Health Organization declared that this is a Public Health Emergency of International Concern since January 30, 2020.

Bloomberg News and other business publications have reported several plant closures, travel restrictions, and imposed quarantines as a result of this outbreak.[97] Many small businesses, even big ones, have gone bankrupt because of the pandemic.

As of February 10, 2020 there have been 40,235 confirmed cases reported of people infected by the virus in China. Also reported were 909 deaths, and 319 cases in 24 other countries, including one death, according to WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.[98]

On November 14, 2020, there were 53,853,718 global COVID-19 cases and 1,311,524 deaths with cases in 217 countries and territories.[99]

China change

  • The first cases of COVID-19 were detected in Wuhan, Hubei, Mainland China in December 2019.[100]
  • On Feb. 4, 2020, the Seattle Times reported that Around 2020 Chinese new year authorities closed down travel from China to Macau. As a result, visits fell eighty percent.[101]
  • Feb 6, 2020, the COVID-19 whistleblower, Li Wenliang, dies of the disease.
  • On February 6, 2020, according to Chinese authorities, a man from the United States who tested positive for the virus died.[102]
  • On February 25, 2020 the Asian Scientist Magazine reported Chinese Scientists Sequence Genome Of COVID-19 [103]
  • According to the European Centre for Disease Prevention, China had the largest number of confirmed cases and deaths on March 1, 2020.[104]
  • On March 3, 2020 Science (journal) reported:
    • China built two new hospitals in one week just for patients of COVID-19
    • The article praised the way China has handled this crisis, but said "draconian" measures were used to achieve success.[105]
  • On March 6, 2020, CNN reported that a hotel used as a COVID-19 quarantine center collapsed. Seventy people were trapped in a collapsed Quanzhou hotel.[106]
  • The Chinese economy was greatly affected by the virus, and many factories shut down during the spike of cases in China during the early months of the pandemic.[107]
  • As of October 30, 2020, the number of cases of the virus in China were generally going down, with only 771 new cases being reported in the month of October.[108]

United States change

  • The first case of COVID-19 in the United States was detected in a man from the state of Washington on January 21, 2020.[109]
  • On February 27, 2020, US President Donald Trump appointed Vice President Mike Pence to lead the US response to COVID-19.[110]
  • On February 29, 2020, the first death in the US was reported from the state of Washington.[111]
  • On March 3, 2020 CBS reported 15 states with confirmed cases.[112]
  • Movements such as elbow bumps began replacing handshakes , as handshakes spread the virus and bacteria more.[113]
  • On March 6, 2020, the CDC announced that one million test kits would be distributed.[114][115]
  • On March 9, 2020, the US stock market was approaching bear territory.[116]
  • On March 9, 2020, there were also scattered reports that some were quarantined while their household members were not.[117]
  • On March 10, 2020, the United States Secretary of Health and Human Services, Alex Azar, said that it is was not known how many Americans tested positive for the virus. This was because many of the test kits went out to private companies.[118]
  • On March 10, 2020, the governor of New York, Andrew Cuomo, announced that the city of New Rochelle was the largest cluster of COVID-19 cases in the state. Among other things done to contain the virus in New Rochelle, the National Guard was sent to the city to hand out food and disinfect buildings.[119]
  • On March 26, the United States surpass Italy and China's cases, becoming the epicenter for a while.[120]
  • On April 3, 2020, the CDC first recommended the use of cloth face coverings by the general public to reduce the spread of the virus in places such as grocery stores and pharmacies.[121]
  • On April 11, the U.S. became the most death in the world.[122]
  • On July 22, 2020, the United States surpassed 1,000 daily COVID-19 deaths for a second time.[123]
  • On September 22, 2020, the United States reached 200,000 deaths from the virus.[124]
  • Between September to October, there was a COVID-19 outbreak at the White House, causing many officials to be diagnosed with the infection, including President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump.[125]
  • In December 2020, California surpassed over 30,000 new cases in a day.[126]
  • On December 11, 2020, the Food and Drug Administration said doctors could give people the Pfizer vaccine.[27][29]
  • On December 14, 2020, the State of New York gave people the first vaccines, starting with health care workers.[27][29]
  • On December 26, 2020, California had a record breaking 65,055 new cases in a day after Christmas.[127]
  • California became the first state to surpass 2 million cases in December 2020.[128]

Economic effects of COVID-19 in the United States change

Italy change

  • On February 27, 2020, according to the EU Observer, a dozen towns in the northern regions of Lombardy and Veneto were under lockdown, with around 50,000 citizens not allowed to leave, and over 200 reported cases of COVID n Italy.[133]
  • On March 4, 2020, according to the Guardian , the Italian government has ordered the closing of all of Italy's schools and universities until 15 March, 2020[134]
  • On March 5, 2020 the Guardian reported: "Italian educational institutions close as Covid-19 deaths pass 100"[135]
  • On March 8, 2020, Al Jazeera reported that after a daily infection rate of 1,247 cases, Lombardy together with ten other areas were sealed off to try to quarantine 16 million people.[136] The cities of Milan and Venice were in the quarantined area.[137]
  • On March 10, 2020, it was reported that Italy was under quarantine.[138][139]
  • On October 5, 2020, Italy imposed a new lockdown and set of restrictions after previously relaxing them. This was due to a second wave of cases that was even worse than the one in spring.[140]

Iran change

  • On 28 February 2020, the BBC reported COVID-19 deaths in Iran were at least 210.[141]
  • March 3, 2020 multiple Iranian government officials including deputy health minister Iraj Harirchi and vice president of women and family affairs Masoumeh Ebtekar, who served as a spokesperson during the Iran hostage crisis, had contracted COVID-19.[142][143]

Canada change

  • The first case of COVID-19 in Canada was detected in a man from Toronto on January 25, 2020.[144]
  • On March 12, 2020, Sophie Grégoire Trudeau, the wife of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, tested positive for coronavirus. The Prime Minister and his wife isolated for 14 days.[145]
  • On April 6, 2020, Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer, Theresa Tam, said that people should use simple cloth facemasks to help slow the spread of the virus.[146]
  • On May 1, 2020, Canada surpassed 200 daily coronavirus deaths.[147]
  • On November 12, 2020, Canada surpassed 5,000 daily COVID-19 cases.[147]
  • On December 26, 2020, Canada confirmed first two cases of mutant coronavirus strain from England.[148]

South Africa change

 
  • The new coronavirus strain, called the 501.V2 Variant, was first discovered in South African province Eastern Cape, KwaZulu-Natal and Western Cape. It spreads more rapidly.[149]

Australia change

New Zealand change

  • The first case of COVID-19 in New Zealand was detected in late February 2020 in a person in their 60s.[151]
  • On March 24, 2020, New Zealand reported over 100 daily coronavirus cases for the first time.[152]
  • From April to November 2020, New Zealand reported between 0 and 50 daily cases.[152]
  • Between August 25, 2021 and August 31, 2021, the whole of New Zealand had been temporarily increased to its maximum lockdown level, Level 4, due to the delta variant.[153] Most of the cases during August 2021 were originated from New South Wales.[154] As of September 6, 2021, all of New Zealand has dropped to Level 2, while Auckland remains at Level 4.[153]

Cruise ships change

  • On the Diamond Princess cruise ship, out of 3,711 total passengers and crew members, 621 people, or 17% of all the people on board the ship tested positive for COVID-19. The ship ended its quarantine on February 18th.[155]

Africa change

  • In late February 2020, Nigeria had it's first case in Sub-Saharan Africa which negatively affected Nigeria's economy, education, religion and social relationships.[156]
  • In November 2020, Africa surpassed 2 million cases.[157]

Food and hunger change

The pandemic made it more difficult for millions of people all over the world to get enough food. People lost their jobs, so they did not have money to buy food. Farms were shut down, so there was less food made. Processing plants and food factories were shut down, so less food was made ready for people to eat.[158]

In April, Arif Husain of the United Nations' World Food Program said that 130 million more people could go hungry, in addition to the 135 million who were already hungry before the pandemic began. He said that poorer countries would be more affected than rich countries because the way they move raw food from farms to cities and other places where people live is less organized and relies more on human beings than on automatic systems.[158]

This hunger crisis is different from crises in other years because it happened to the whole world at the same time. That meant that people working in other countries could not help by sending money home.[158][159]

All over the world, children who ate meals at school had less access to food when the schools were shut down.[158]

Scientists from the University of Michigan said the pandemic was making it harder for people to find food. In a study published in May, they said one in seven Americans over age 50 said they had trouble getting enough food before the pandemic, and it got worse when senior centers that provided meals were closed.[160] Federal and state governments started programs to bring food to older people and children. There were also more food donation drives in towns.[159]

Elderly change

In the United States, nursing homes had some of the highest rates of infection and death,

40% of all COVID-19 deaths in the country. Nursing homes are group homes for old people who need medical care, for disabled people who need medical care, and for people recovering from severe sickness or injury, like stroke patients.

Many people who live in nursing homes pay through the government program Medicaid, which pays less than Medicare or regular insurance companies. In June, many American nursing homes were caught throwing their regular patients out so they could make room for COVID-19 patients who could pay them more. Because nursing homes had stopped allowing visitors, it took longer for them to get caught. United States law requires nursing homes to warn patients 30 days before kicking them out, but the nursing homes did not do this.

Some of the nursing homes took the COVID-19 patients because state governments asked them to and they say they sent their elderly residents away because they were worried they would catch COVID-19 from the sick patients.[161]

Environment change

Because so many governments told people to stay at home, there was less air pollution than usual for that time of year. Pollution in New York fell by 50% and the use of coal in China fell by 40%.[162] The European Space Agency showed pictures taken from a satellite of China's pollution disappearing during quarantine and coming back when everyone went back to work.[163]

The pandemic and shutdowns made people use less electricity. In the United States, people got less of their electricity from coal power but kept using gas and renewable power like wind and solar power. This was because coal plants are more expensive to run, so power companies used them less.[164]

Pollution from before the pandemic also affected what happened after people became sick. Scientists saw that more people died from COVID-19 in places with large amounts of air pollution. One team of scientists from Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg looked at air pollution information from satellites and statistics on COVID-19 deaths in Italy, France, Germany and Spain and saw that places with large amounts of nitrogen dioxide pollution had more people die from COVID-19. Nitrogen dioxide can damage the lungs.[165][166]

The shutdowns and social distancing also affected animals. Human beings started staying at home about the same time in the spring when sea turtles like to come on land to lay their eggs. Turtle scientists in the United States and Thailand both reported more nests than usual on seashores in Florida and Phuket. They say it is because people are not coming to the beach or bringing their dogs to the beach and because there are fewer boats in the water nearby. Scientists also say they see more dugong and dolphins.[167][168][169] With fewer cars driving down roads, salamanders, frogs, and other amphibians were able to cross them for their spring migration. According to citizen scientists from Big Night Maine, a group that watches amphibians, four amphibians made it across the roads alive for every one amphibian killed by cars. Most years, it is only two to one.[170]

Not all ocean mammals did well. According to marine biologists in Florida, manatee deaths in April and May were 20% higher than in 2019. They say this was because many people decided to go boating because other things to do were closed.[171]

Stopping the next pandemic change

Researchers from the San Diego Zoo Global had the idea for a system that people could use to find dangerous germs before they become pandemics or even before they jump from other animals to humans. They said it was important to watch the wildlife trade, like in the Wuhan wet market. The scientists said that over the past eleven years it has gotten easier and easier to sequence viral genomes, and it does not have to be done by a large lab or by a government any more. The scientists said it would be better to spread the work out among more people.[172][173]

List of terminology associated with COVID-19 change

  • SARS-CoV-2 is the virus that causes COVID-19
  • 2019-nCoV is the old name for SARS-CoV-2
  • Coronavirus disease 2019 is the complete name for COVID-19
  • Community spread is the spread of the disease without a known travel connection
  • Clusters are groups of COVID-19 cases in which many people in the same area became infected with COVID-19

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