Europe will face a rising death toll from the coronavirus during autumn, the World Health Organization warned on Monday (Sep 14) as the number of daily infections around the world hit a record high. Israel is among the countries battling a new spike, announcing a three-week lockdown from Friday when people will not be allowed more than 500 metres from their homes.
The World Health Organization reported 307,930 new cases worldwide on Sunday, the highest daily figure since the beginning of the pandemic in China late last year, as global cases rapidly topped 29 million.
“It’s going to get tougher. In October, November, we are going to see more mortality,” WHO Europe director Hans Kluge told AFP news agency in an interview.
“Covid-19 has brought to light the weaknesses and strengths of European society. It has bluntly revealed the reality of our health systems.”
Kluge also said the pandemic had disrupted services for noncommunicable diseases, including monitoring of diabetes, hypertension and cancer screening in 68 percent of the member states.
WHO Europe’s 53 members started a two-day online meeting Monday focusing on their virus response as the global death toll crossed 925,000.
WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told the meeting by video-link: “We are by no means out of the woods.”
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, watching cases rise, echoed the WHO chief’s words exactly and called for vigilance.
In France, the cities of Marseille and Bordeaux announced a series of measures to limit public gatherings as Covid-19 infections soar.