Efforts to vaccinate people for Covid-19 have been frustrated by disarray and limited supplies in some places. The scourge has killed more than 2 million people worldwide.
We look at how the virus has unfolded in the last one year since the Wuhan lockdown.
There have been over 98 million cases across the world. Barring few island nations in the Pacific, the virus has spread to every part of the world. Many countries are currently witnessing second, in some cases even third, the wave of coronavirus.
In Europe, leaders are struggling to counter a surge in new cases and rising fatalities. Several regions have reimposed restrictions on the movement of people.
The US with 17 million cases continued to grapple with latest surge in virus cases. In India, the number of cases crossed the 10 million mark earlier this month. In the UK, the new variant has once again necessiated the need for reimposition of strict lockdown measures.
Countries across the world were bringing in new measures, including the Netherlands, which was set to introduce its first curfew since World War II.
In the United States, the world’s worst-hit country, President Joe Biden gave his highest estimate yet of its eventual toll, as he stepped up federal aid.
“The virus is surging,” President Biden told a news conference. “We’re at 400,000 dead, expected to reach well over 600,000.”
In Britain, another 1,401 fatalities were announced Friday, taking the overall toll to 95,981 — the highest in Europe. Virus deaths have risen 16% over the past week, while the number of people hospitalised with Covid-19 is approaching double the number seen during the worst days of the first wave of the pandemic in April.
Across the world, the US has so far given shot to the highest number of people followed by China. While over 17 million people have received shot in the US, 15 million have been administered with coronavirus vaccine shots in China.
Other than India, Russia, Spain, Turkey, Italy, Germany, UAE, Israel, UK, China and the US have all completed over one million Covid-19 shots.
The Covid-19 immunisation programme is currently underway in 50 countries. As of January 21, over 57 million Covid-19 vaccine shots have been administered across the world.
The worldwide lockdown caused severe stress on all the major world economies. In India, the GDP contracted by 23.9%. Tens of millions of people are at the risk of falling into extreme poverty. The World Health Organisation expects the number of undernourished people could increase by up to 132 million.
Thousands of enterprises across the world are facing an existential crisis, resulting in job losses for millions of people. The world body estimated that nearly half of the 3.3 billion working population of the world is at the risk of losing their livelihood.