Coronavirus: Deaths surpass 10,000, Italy takes lead from China

The total number of deaths linked to the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) around the world have topped 10,000 as of 03:30 GMT on Friday, according to the Center for Systems Science and Engineering (CSSE) at Johns Hopkins University.

Of the total 255,305 confirmed cases, a total of 10,444 people have died, said the CSSE.


Italy has become the hardest-hit country outside China during the coronavirus pandemic. The country's cumulative number of COVID-19 cases reached 41,035, according to data released on Thursday by the Civil Protection Department. A total of 627 COVID-19 patients had died on Friday in Italy, taking the country's death toll to more than 4000.

Local governments in Italy on Thursday have strengthened restrictions on people's outdoor activities and closed more shops to further curb the spread of the disease. Italy has been under a nationwide lockdown since March 10, and the Italian government said that the lockdown, which is scheduled to last until April 3, may be extended.

According to the local press, Italy's first temporary hospital built to tackle the coronavirus pandemic opened on Friday in Cremona City in the northern Lombardy region, and will provide 60 beds, with eight for intensive care.

A further 39 people have died in England after testing positive for the coronavirus, bringing the total number of confirmed deaths in the country to 167, the National Health Service said on Friday.

The patients who died were aged between 50 and 99 and had underlying health conditions.

Restrictive measures to minimize social interaction in Britain might need to be in place for a year to prevent the health service being overloaded, according to scientists advising the government.

Spain recorded the second most cases among European countries after Italy. Spanish health authorities said the number of COVID-19 infections rose to 19,980 on Friday, with 767 deaths from the virus.

The country's Minister for Health, Consumer Affairs and Social Services, Salvador Illa, said on Thursday that Spain is approaching the peak in the number of confirmed cases of COVID-19. The minister confirmed that further measures will be taken by the government to make sure that the health system is able to withstand the strain of new cases.

France's Health Ministry released on Thursday that the total confirmed cases in the country has reached 10,995. One hundred and eight COVID-19 patients had died in the last 24 hours, taking the country's death toll to 372. The ministry said around 5000 beds nationwide can be provided for the treatment of severe cases, however, those beds are not evenly distributed.

Senior physician Holger Hildebrand tests a full-face mask at the Covid-19 sintensive care unit of the Klinikum Bad Hersfeld hospital in Germany.
Senior physician Holger Hildebrand tests a full-face mask at the Covid-19 sintensive care unit of the Klinikum Bad Hersfeld hospital in Germany. Photo credit: Getty

Data from Germany's disease control agency Robert Koch Institute (RKI) showed the number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 has risen to 12,087 by Friday, with the death toll reaching 31.

The Americas

The number of COVID-19 cases in the United States reached 14,631 on Friday with 205 deaths, according to CSSE. 

The health authorities in Colombia announced on Thursday night that the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases reached 102. Curfew will be enforced in the capital city Bogota, while residents are required to stay at home as much as possible.

Also, all international flights will be banned to enter the country starting March 23 and lasting for 30 days, during which period all foreigners and Colombian citizens will not be allowed to enter.

Middle East and Asia

China, where the first cases of COVID-19 emerged in December, is seeing signs that its restrictive lockdowns and hastily built hospitals have worked.

The epicentre of its outbreak, the city of Wuhan, had no new infections for a second day on Friday, the country's health ministry said. All 39 new cases recorded nationally were from abroad.

Iran's Ministry of Health and Medical Education on Thursday said the total number of COVID-19 infections has reached 18,407, while the death toll rose to 1,284.

Japan's health ministry and local governments said the number of COVID-19 infections nationwide had risen to 962. The death toll in Japan from the pneumonia-causing virus currently stands at a total of 33 people, according to the health ministry, with the figure including those from the virus-hit Diamond Princess cruise ship that was quarantined in Yokohama, close to Tokyo.

South Korea reported 87 more cases of the COVID-19 compared to the previous day, raising the total number to 8,652.

The newly confirmed cases fell below 100 once again, after recording 152 on Thursday. The caseload grew from Sunday to Wednesday.

The fourth death due to the COVID-19 was reported in India on Thursday as a patient died in the northern state of Punjab, confirmed by the country's Ministry of Health. The total number of COVID-19 cases in India rose to 206 with five deaths by Friday. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday appealed to the countrymen to isolate themselves at their homes in order to save themselves from COVID-19.

The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Australia climbed to 839 on Friday, while the death toll reached seven. The country is to ban all non-resident entry starting Friday.

Also, test results for three passengers on the Princess Cruise-operated Ruby Princess ship, which finished its tour Thursday at Sydney, came out positive. Australia authorities have urged ship crew members and passengers to self-isolate. There were 1100 crew and 2,700 passengers on board.

Egypt confirmed 46 new COVID-19 cases on Thursday, raising the number of COVID-19 infections in the country to 256, including seven deaths, the Egyptian Health Ministry said in a statement.

Egypt has recently taken strict precautionary measures to prevent the spread of the virus, including temporary closure of schools and universities, suspending flights, reducing employees and sterilizing means of transportation, government offices, hotels and tourist attractions.

On Thursday, the Egyptian cabinet decided to temporarily close coffee shops, clubs, malls, restaurants and other entertainment places from early evening to early morning over coronavirus concerns.

Reuters / Newshub.