Covid-19 Update

Data are updated daily at 4pm BST. Commentary is updated weekly. Last commentary update October 21, 2020. 

October 21: With the winter in the northern hemisphere approaching the number of Covid-19 infections hit new records in a number of countries including Russia and Iran. Global cases also continued to see sharp rises with more than 2 million new cases since this time last week.

India continued to lead the trailing seven day averages for death rates globally, even if that number has come down recently from 1,067 at the start of the month to 761 today. But in what looks like a worrying turn for the US, seven day averages are increasing and could match, or exceed, those of India in the coming days unless something is done to turn the tide of infections.

Brazil is also seeing an uptick in trailing seven day averages for death and remains the second worst country for total Covid-19 related deaths.

Round up of cases and deaths

Worldwide – There continues to be a fall in the new cases of coronavirus infections versus seven day averages worldwide. But the total number of infections today has passed 40 million, following an extra 2 million infections since this time last week. And while case numbers remained high in the US with an additional 58,549 reporting new infections, the US for the first time in weeks reported a fall in new cases versus its seven day averages. Countries reporting both steep rises in day-on-day new infection rates and seven day averages included Brazil, Russia, the UK and Mexico.

The rising cases have seen governments across the globe resorting to ever more strict measures to curb infection rates, with some countries now closing schools and hospitality venues.

US – With Covid-19 deaths approaching a quarter of a million in the US, the country has seen a slowing in new infections, with new infections down against seven day averages. But there remain states where the number of infections continue to climb with Texas and Florida amongst the hardest hit regions. Fears of a rise in cases in Northeast of the country has led the governors of New Jersey, New York and Connecticut to urge against travel between the three states.

Europe – Countries across Europe have experienced sharp rises in new Covid-19 infections, with the likes of the UK, France and Netherlands reporting new infection rates higher than those seen in the spring. Today Slovenia, Croatia and Switzerland all posted record daily highs for new infections. Along with the rising cases are the increasing restrictions to slow infection rates. The Czech Republic today ordered the closure of non-essential shops and asked citizens not to travel except for work and medical visits. Poland is considering halting classroom teaching for older children, including those in the last few years of primary school. In Spain, where infections are nearing the 1 million mark, the capital Madrid remains on partial lockdown and bars and restaurants have been closed in the Catalan region. In Belgium non-essential operations and routine hospital procedures have been cancelled to help deal with a surge in Covid-19 cases.  

Latin America – A reversal in recent falling new corona virus cases has not only seen Mexico report almost 2,000 more infections since yesterday’s numbers, but could impact on the country’s already grim mortality rates. With total deaths standing at almost 87,000 Mexico remains fourth in the world for Covid-19 mortality, with its rate outstripping many more populous countries. The recent rise in new cases has led the mayor of Mexico City to warn of tighter restrictions in the coming days.

Asia – Hopes that infection rates in India have well and truly peaked have been supported by the 54,044 new Covid-19 cases reported today, this compares with the 63,509 cases this time last week and the 100,000 plus the country was reporting a few weeks ago. If infection rates continue to fall the country might not, as previously predicted, over take the US in terms of total cases. But there are fears cases will rise during the holiday season in November.

ROW – Russia is continuing to keep its economy open and unlike other parts of the region has only resorted to shutting secondary schools. The country, however, today reported a record number of deaths. South Africa could be facing the prospect of returning to stricter lockdown measures following a surge in cases in the Western Cape.

Coronavirus in top 20 economic powers
Country Total cases Total deaths New daily cases: reported on 23 October Daily cases: reported on 22 October New daily cases: 7-day avg  New cases vs 7-day average
World 41,771,929 1,142,365 433,305 437,012 391,609 Up
United States of America 8,408,340 224,705 72,058 62,978 61,530 Up
India 7,761,312 117,226 54,366 55,839 56,777 Down
Brazil 5,323,630 156,307 24,858 24,818 22,846 Up
Russia 1,463,306 25,195 15,971 15,700 15,362 Up
Spain 1,026,281 34,685   20,986 14,987  
France 999,043 34,977 41,622 26,676 27,498 Up
Mexico 874,171 87,965 6,612 6,845 3,614 Up
United Kingdom 810,467 44,575 21,238 26,687 19,478 Up
Italy 465,726 37,214 16,078 15,199 11,616 Up
Germany 403,291 10,146 11,242 11,287 7,759 Up
Indonesia 377,541 12,899 4,432 4,267 4,099 Up
Turkey 355,528 9,616 2,102 2,013 1,885 Up
Saudi Arabia 343,774 5,251 401 405 398 Up
Netherlands 262,109 6,903 9,268 8,738 8,272 Up
Canada 209,148 10,056 2,788 2,672 2,470 Up
Switzerland 96,731 1,927 4,968 5,596 3,535 Up
Japan 95,138 1,724 614 591 554 Up
China 91,073 4,738 29 22 26 Up
Australia 27,466 905 22 14 16 Up
South Korea 25,698 452 155 119 89 Up
Source: ECDC as of 14:00 GMT and Evaluate research.
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