Coronavirus, or COVID-19, has shut down global travel, trashed global economies and become one of the world’s biggest killers. Here’s how the pandemic has spread worldwide.
The COVID-19 pandemic began in China (Wuhan province) in late 2019, where 85,997 people have reportedly been infected, resulting in at least 4,634 deaths.
It has since spread rapidly to 213 countries and territories, sparking wider precautionary measures as the death toll eclipsed that of SARS two decades ago.
The World Health Organisation suggests that at least 10 per cent of the world’s population may have had the disease.
Although the deadly virus started in China, it soon ravaged Italy, Iran and Spain.
But the United States surpassed each of them with the highest reported coronavirus death toll of more than 236,077 by November – including the US President Donald Trump.
A staggering 9.4 million confirmed cases have been reported across the US.
Brazil (159,902 deaths), Mexico (91,753), India (122,149) and the UK (46,555 deaths) have also recorded grim milestones.
New Zealand is one of a small number of jurisdictions – including mainland China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, South Korea, Vietnam, Mongolia, Australia and Fiji – pursuing COVID-19 containment or elimination.
New Zealand (25 deaths) actually has the lowest COVID-19 death rate in the OECD, with the last case of community transmission reported on May 1. That has allowed the country to return to near-normal operation.
In Australia (907 deaths), where the virus also appeared to be contained, there’s been a resurgence since June, mainly in the southern state of Victoria, and its capital Melbourne, linked to returning travellers in hotel quarantine.
By November, there were 20,346 cases reported in Victoria and 819 deaths – the most of any state in the country, leaving it virtually isolated from the rest of Australia.
These statistics are updated at regular intervals. Last updated November 1, 2020.
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