The world added more than 2 million new COVID-19 cases in the past 3 days, with health systems coming under pressure in the Americas and in more European countries and China reporting another pocket of local spread, triggering more strong measures.

Worsening situation in Americas region

Over the past week, the World Health Organization (WHO) Americas region reported 2.5 million cases, making up more than half of the global total, Carissa Etienne, MBBS, MSc, who directs the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), said today at a briefing. She added that over the past week, 42,000 more people in the region died from their infections.

The sustained boom in cases is sobering proof that countries are failing to control the virus with their public policies. “I’m particularly concerned for the next few weeks,” Etienne said, emphasizing that many hospitals are at or very close to capacity. The city of Manaus in Brazil’s Amazonas region is a dramatic example, with its overrun system, but case rises in other Americas countries are also straining hospitals, such as in Mexico City, where most beds are filled with patients sick with COVID-19.

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