Coronavirus: Covid-19 Ten Times More Deadly than H1N1, according to WHO

General News
A worker wears the masks distributed by the authorities in Ronda (Spain), April 13, 2020 .. (© AFP / JORGE GUERRERO. A worker wears the masks distributed by the authorities in Ronda (Spain), April 13, 2020)

Spain partially returns to work, towards lifting restrictions in Germany, more than 114,000 dead … Update on the coronavirus pandemic worldwide.

“Only a vaccine will completely stop the transmission of Covid-19”. This is what the World Health Organization said Monday 13th April 2020.

WHO points out that the coronavirus pandemic killed ten times more people than the A/H1N1 flu pandemic of 2009.

According to a latest report, more than 114,000 people have died from Codiv-19 worldwide.

Read also: Covid-19 : 14,393 deaths, including 9,523 in hospital… Sunday’s results in France

Lowest balance in Spain

Taking advantage of a downward trend in the number of deaths caused by the coronavirus pandemic , Spain released its containment by a notch Monday 13 April 2020 by authorizing a partial resumption of work , although elsewhere the disease continues to mourn the planet.

At a time when in many countries measures of social distancing seem to be bearing fruit and slowing the rate of deaths, the government of Madrid has authorized the Spaniards to resume, to a certain extent, the path of factories and construction sites, after two weeks “Hibernation” where all non-essential economic activities were stopped.

“We are far from victory, from the moment when we find this normalcy in our lives,” said Sunday the head of government Pedro Sanchez. The 46.6 million Spaniards also remain subject to strict confinement imposed since March 14.

On Monday, the daily toll of the pandemic in Spain rose to 517 dead , the lowest figure since March 20th, bringing the total of deaths in the most bereaved country in Europe after Italy to 17,489 killed.

Ten million masks distributed

In an attempt to revive a fragile economy while avoiding a rebound in contagion, police and volunteers have distributed ten million masks in subways and stations to people forced to use public transport.

Maria Martinez, who works in a health centre, was delighted to have received a mask while getting on the train, “because we can’t find one or they are very expensive”.

“We just get enough” to work, “so I didn’t have enough to travel,” she said, arriving at Atocha station in Madrid.

Health authorities believe that the peak of the crisis has been passed, since the 950 deaths recorded on April 2.

Towards a lifting of restrictions in Germany?

In Germany, the National Academy of Sciences Leopoldina, whose opinions are very followed by the authorities, advocated Monday a return “in stages” to normal, if in particular the figures for new contaminations “stabilize at a low level” and if “hygiene measures are maintained”.

Sunday the Minister of Health, Jens Spahn, hinted at a reduction in coercive measures, more or less strict depending on the region, which severely affect the main European economy.

Over 114,000 dead worldwide

The return to work, well underway in China after the lifting of containment measures in the region where the pandemic began in December, is far from being on the agenda in many other countries.

In France, President Emmanuel Macron will, in a speech on television, announce Monday evening an extension of the general confinement, at least until May 10th.

The country noted Sunday a slight decrease in the number of intensive care patients for the fourth consecutive day, as well as the number of deaths in a day in the hospital (310 dead against 345 the day before) for a total of 14,393 dead .

Coronavirus Covid-19 disease has already killed at least 114,539 people worldwide, a figure that has doubled in just over a week.

The United States remains the most bereaved country with at least 22,109 deaths. With a total of more than 78,000 dead, Europe remains the continent hardest hit.

Authorities in Iran announced an additional 111 deaths on Monday and spoke of a “decreasing and steady trend” in new cases of contamination.

Resumption of activity at the port of Wuhan, April 13, 2020 in the Chinese province of Hubei.
Resumption of activity at the port of Wuhan, April 13, 2020 in the Chinese province of Hubei. (© AFP / STR)

Chaos in Ecuador

Elsewhere, the situation is appalling in several countries, notably in Ecuador where hospitals and funeral homes are completely overwhelmed. In Guayaquil, the economic capital, a special team of police and military has been created to collect corpses which sometimes remain abandoned in the streets.

This team has already recovered nearly 800 bodies from homes across the city.

But the daily death toll has been showing signs of falling for several days in some of the most affected countries, Italy, France and the United States.

Italy announced its least lethal day on Sunday in more than three weeks, with 431 dead in 24 hours (nearly 20,000 in total).

Burial in a cemetery in Guayaquil, April 12, 2020 in Ecuador.
Burial in a cemetery in Guayaquil, April 12, 2020 in Ecuador. (© AFP / Jose Sánchez)

More than 10,000 dead in New York

The pandemic also seems to be approaching its peak in the United States where 1,514 new deaths were recorded in 24 hours, a figure in decline for the second consecutive day.

White House chief expert Anthony Fauci said the US economy could gradually recover in May. While the main indicators of the spread “are not only stabilizing but starting to go down”, he said his “cautious optimism”.

The governor of New York State, epicentre of the disease with more than 10,000 deaths, however, tempered: “We do not see a significant drop, it is just a stabilization,” said Andrew Cuomo.

A first sailor of the aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt was found dead Monday on the island of Guam, in the Pacific, where the ship is at anchor and has been partially evacuated.

Boris Johnson out of business

The disease does not spare the powerful either: British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, 55, narrowly escaped by his own admission. After spending a week in hospital, including three days in intensive care, he recovered on Monday in the Prime Ministers’ country residence, north-west London.

The epidemic has killed more than 11,000 people in the UK.

Read also: Covid-19: British Prime Minister Boris Johnson is released from the hospital

To strengthen containment controls in the Russian capital, the city of Moscow launched an electronic pass system on Monday that residents will need to download in order to travel by car or public transit.

On the economic front, the oil-exporting countries agreed to an agreement Sunday concerning a drop in production of an unprecedented scale, in the hope of halting the fall in prices. Crude prices jumped in Asia on Monday morning, but the stock markets did not catch fire, considering this deal as an expected minimum.

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