While we are seeing a decline in many countries amid social distancing, lockdown measures and vaccine drives, there are a few countries that are still undergoing continuous issues and are just not able to get COVID-19 under control. A second wave of COVID-19 is ripping through Brazil, pushing hospitals and ICUs toward collapse and claiming record numbers of daily deaths.
Brazil has broken its own record three times this month for the number of deaths in a 24-hour period. On Wednesday, Brazil’s Health Ministry registered a devastating new high of 2,286 lives lost to the virus. In total, more than 270,000 people are known to have died due to COVID-19, making Brazil’s the second-highest national death toll after the United States.
Meanwhile, countries throughout Europe, including the Czech Republic, Hungary, Estonia, Slovakia, Italy, France, Poland, and Sweden have seen significant rises in average new daily cases in the recent weeks. Overall, the European Union has recorded over 800,000 new coronavirus cases over the past seven days, an increase of about 5.8% from the seven days prior. A Reuters report claims that Poland has the highest number of new infections since November. The average number of new infections reported in Bulgaria has been increasing for 7 days straight. The average number of new infections reported each day in North Macedonia rises by more than 370 over the last 3 weeks, 34% of its previous peak.
There have been at least 35,665,000 reported infections and 972,000 reported deaths caused by the novel coronavirus in Europe so far. Vaccine drives have also been largely slow. The E.U. has administered the first dose to only 7% of the population and has fully vaccinated 3.09% as of March 10, according to Politico.