COVID-19 update

This item appears on page 4 of the September 2020 issue.

At press time, active COVID-19 infections had been confirmed in 188 countries and territories, with more than 18 million cases and, resulting from those, more than 690,000 deaths. The country with the most confirmed cases was the US, with 4.4 million. It was followed by Brazil (2.5 million), India (1.5 million) and Russia (833,000).

A rise in cases in European countries, such as Spain, Italy, France and Germany, was causing concern that the Continent is facing a resurgence of the virus.

On July 25, North Korea announced its first confirmed case of COVID-19, blaming a former defector returning from South Korea for bringing the virus into the country. International health organizations were skeptical that this was truly the first case in North Korea.

On July 31, Vietnam reported the first two confirmed COVID-19-related deaths in the country, in Hanoi. One of the most successful countries in handling the pandemic, Vietnam had no COVID-19-related deaths at all, and only 546 total confirmed cases, up to that point. There had not been a single locally contracted case of COVID-19 for three months before a new outbreak occurred on July 27 at a resort in the city of Danang.