Home News Morning brief: Covid-19 update for April 20, 2020

Morning brief: Covid-19 update for April 20, 2020

Singapore's total now stands at 6,588, the highest in South East Asia, closely followed by Indonesia, with 6,575 cases, and the Philippines, with 6,259 cases

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As of 9 am, April 20, 2020:

World count

There are now 2,382,064 confirmed cases of the Covid-19 worldwide. The United States accounts for the highest number of cases, with 762,690 infections, followed by Spain (198,674) and Italy (178,972).  There have been 165,636 deaths worldwide, and 611,791 people worldwide have recovered from Covid-19, since the outbreak began late last year.

Deaths in Europe surpass 100,000

The number of deaths in Europe, which became the epicenter of the coronavirus pandemic after China’s cases began to drop, surpassed 100,000 over the weekend. Italy and Spain account for almost half of those deaths, with France and the United Kingdom also recording over 15,000 deaths each.  And while the numbers of infected appear to be tapering off in Italy, Spain and France, which has caused the beginning of restrictions to be eased, the UK remains the continent’s hotspot. Critics have raised alarms over the number of deaths of healthcare workers as well as the lack of protective equipment for them.

Singapore now tops number of Covid-19 cases in SEA

In Singapore, 596 new cases were reported by the Ministry of Health (MOH) on April 19. The country’s total now stands at 6,588, the highest in South East Asia, closely followed by Indonesia, with 6,575 cases, and the Philippines, with 6,259 cases.

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There are 26 additional people who have recovered from Covid-19, for a total of 768. Five new infection clusters have also been identified at Woodlands Lodge I, Changi Lodge II, 51 Paya Ubi Industrial Park, 17 Jalan Besut and Sembawang Shipyard.

A 5-year-old has also been confirmed as positive for Covid-19. The child last went to Little Treasures Childcare in Woodlands on April 7 and has been under quarantine when a family member tested positive for the coronavirus on April 13. The centre will be closed for cleaning on April 21 and 22.

US Governors tell Donald Trump it’s too early to end lockdown

Amid the growing number of lockdown protests and plans to extend stay-at-home orders, the Governors of the states with the highest numbers of confirmed Covid-19 cases told US President Donald Trump that it’s too early to end the lockdown. It seems as though President Trump was encouraging the protestors, tweeting a call to “LIBERATE” Michigan, Minnesota and Virginia last weekend. Over 40,000 people have died from the coronavirus in the US.

Japan’s infections pass 10,000, sparking fears of collapse of health care system

Japan, which is now under a state of emergency, saw the number of its infections reach 10,087 over the weekend. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe apologized to the country’s health workers for failing to obtain enough medical equipment including N95 masks, ventilators and personal protective equipment, which has ignited fears of a collapse in the country’s health care system.

Wuhan lab denies being source of coronavirus

In Wuhan, the city in central China where the pandemic began, the Wuhan Institute of Virology has denied claims that it was the source of the virus. Professor Yuan Zhiming told the media that “there’s no way this virus came from us”. It had first denied being the source of the virus two months ago, and said that it had shared information concerning the virus to the World Health Organisation in early January.

Professor Yuan’s rebuttal comes amid concerns that China has been less than transparent in its reporting concerning the virus, with the US saying it would investigate the origins of the virus and how it came to be spread globally. -/TISG

Read related: Global virus deaths top 150,000 as US braces for lockdown protests

Global virus deaths top 150,000 as US braces for lockdown protests

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