Global COVID-19 figures hit major milestones on Saturday, as cases and deaths continue to soar.
According to the World Health Organization’s daily figures released at 6:30 a.m. on Saturday, there were 657,312 new cases of COVID-19, the most ever recorded in one day, and 9,797 deaths reported in the past 24 hours.
As a result, the total number of cases reported worldwide now stands at 53.2 million while the global death toll now exceeds 1.3 million.
Saturday’s figure was driven largely by new infections reported in Europe and the Americas, where cases continue to skyrocket.
The United States reported 193,734 new cases and 1,142 deaths in the past 24 hours, the most of any country in both deaths and new cases. The nearly 194,000 new cases is also the single biggest one-day increase the country has ever reported to the World Health Organization. The country accounted for roughly 70 per cent of all new cases reported in the Americas on Saturday.
Meanwhile, India reported 44,684 new cases, the second-highest of any country in the past 24 hours, followed by Italy (40,902), Brazil (33,207), the United Kingdom (27,301), Poland (24,051), France (23,620), Russia (22,702), Germany (22,461), and Spain (21,371). Italy’s nearly 41,000 new cases were the most the European country has ever reported in one day, breaking the previous high of 39,809 new cases set on Nov. 3.
Canada saw 5,516 new cases in the past 24 hours, the highest one-day increase ever reported to the World Health Organization.
Uruguay reported 80 new cases in the past 24 hours, its biggest one-day increase. The small South American country has reported less than 3,800 cases in total, significantly fewer cases than neighbouring Argentina and Brazil.
Elsewhere, Japan recorded 1,685 new cases, its highest one-day total since early August, while Australia, which had seen a dramatic rise in cases during the summer, reported just five new infections on Saturday.
Lastly, Romania, where cases have been surging lately, a fire killed 10 people at a COVID-19 intensive care unit in Piatra Neamt, about 353 kilometres north of Bucharest, on Saturday according to The Associated Press.