Resurgence of coronavirus cases worries world
Of late, many countries are showing signs of a resurgence of Covid-19 infections merely a few months after reporting a significant decline in cases
New Delhi: With lockdowns and travel restrictions gradually being lifted amidst the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, governments are bracing themselves for a possible second wave of infections.
A sudden swell of cases in countries like Singapore and South Korea, which were earlier considered success stories for quickly and efficiently containing the outbreak, has also set off alarm bells across the world.
The government of China, the country of origin of the pandemic, was able to largely stem the spread of the virus through aggressive testing and strict lockdown measures. However, a little over two months after it declared containing the pandemic has started to record over 100 new cases per day.
China is not alone. Several countries across the world are showing signs of a similar resurgence of Covid-19 infections despite reporting a significant decline in cases merely a few months ago.
South Korea: In June this year, health officials in South Korea confirmed that a second wave of infections was being witnessed in the country. The east Asian nation had been regarded as one of the world's leading examples on how to combat the pandemic, as it was able to contain the spread of the virus as early as April through aggressive testing and contact tracing. However, in May new clusters began to grow across the country. The number of cases quickly began to escalate particularly in the capital city of Seoul and in Gwangju. "Imported cases" were largely seen as the major factor contributing to the sudden rise in cases.
Australia: Over the last few weeks, Australia has been experiencing an unprecedented spike in the number of new coronavirus cases through community transmission.
In the first week of July, Victoria's total caseload crossed that of New South Wales, and has only risen further since. The state's capital Melbourne has become the epicentre of the second wave of the pandemic in the country. New cases in Melbourne have continued to surge despite a three-week lockdown.
Hong Kong: Despite an initial lull in the number of coronavirus cases being reported city-wide, Hong Kong is now in the midst of a third wave of the pandemic. This time around, the numbers are higher than ever.
Iran: After the country began to relax lockdown restrictions in April, Iran witnessed a rapid spike in coronavirus cases from mid-May onwards. The rise in infections has also been accompanied by a steadily increasing death toll. In June, the total number of Covid-related deaths crossed 100 for the first time. Since June, the country has been recording an average of 3,000 cases per day. Due to the rising numbers, Iran is now vigorously testing its citizenry.
Spain: Ever since Spain lifted a nationwide state of emergency on June 21, the number of new coronavirus cases has steadily surged. A majority of the new clusters were reported in Catalonia and Aragon. As a result, fresh lockdowns were imposed across the country and several other European countries, including Britain, barred the entry of Spanish tourists. The country recorded 1,229 new cases since Thursday, the sharpest surge on record since April 30.
Vietnam: Earlier this week, Vietnam recorded its first Covid-19 case in over three months. Since then, Vietnam has been bracing for a rise in cases after multiple new infections were reported across the country. Health officials are claiming that the fresh cases have been caused by a more virulent new strain of the virus that originated outside the country.
Fiji: On August 1, the island nation of Fiji recorded its first Covid-19 death. Fiji had declared itself coronavirus-free as early as in June, this year. Soon after, as residents stranded in foreign nations began to return home, the country recorded nine new cases. With the death of the 66-year-old man, the total number of active cases now stands at eight.