The United States
New York state remains the epicentre of the American coronavirus crisis, with the total death toll now past 1900, however hot spots have also flared in areas such as New Orleans, Detroit and California.
In New York City, bodies have been loaded onto refrigerated morgue trucks by gurney and forklift outside overwhelmed hospitals in scenes that have devastated the state’s Governor, Andrew Cuomo.
“How does it end? And people want answers,” he said.
“I want answers. The answer is nobody knows for sure.”
The region rushed to set up extra hospital capacity at the mammoth Javits Convention Center, on a Navy hospital ship and in the indoor tennis center that hosts the U.S. Open.
Cuomo said projections suggest the crisis in New York will peak at the end of April, with a high death rate continuing through July.
Across the US, Americans braced for what President Donald Trump warned could be “one of the roughest two or three weeks we’ve ever had in our country.”
The White House projected 100,000 to 240,000 deaths in the US before the outbreak is over, and Vice President Mike Pence said White House models show the country on a trajectory akin to hard-hit Italy.
The US has recorded over 190,000 infections and more than 4100 deaths.
London is just days from unveiling a 4000-bed temporary hospital built in a huge convention center to take non-critical patients so British hospitals can stay ahead of an expected surge.
The United Kingdom has again had a major spike in deaths, with 563 fatalities registered in 24 hours, taking the total death toll to 2352.
Across the UK, 152,979 people have been tested for COVID-19, with 29,474 returning positive results.
The deadliest day yet for the UK also marks one week into a nationwide lockdown.
In a remarkable turnaround, rich economies where virus cases have exploded are welcoming help from less wealthy ones.
Russia sent medical equipment and masks to the US, Cuba sent doctors to France, Turkey dispatched masks, hazmat suits, goggles and disinfectants to Italy and Spain.
Worldwide, more than 900,000 people have been infected and over 44,000 have died, according to a tally kept by Johns Hopkins University, though the real figures are believed to be much higher because of testing shortages, differences in counting the dead and large numbers of mild cases that have gone unreported.
Even as the virus has slowed its growth in overwhelmed Italy and in China, where it first emerged, hospitals in Spain and France are reaching their breaking points, and Britain is bracing for waves of desperately ill people.
“It feels like we are in a Third World country. We don’t have enough masks, enough protective equipment, and by the end of the week we might be in need of more medication too,” said Paris emergency worker Christophe Prudhomme.
Spain, which hit a record Wednesday of 864 deaths in one day, has boosted its hospital beds by 20 per cent.
Dozens of hotels across Spain have been turned into recovery rooms, and authorities are building field hospitals in sports centers, libraries and exhibition halls.
In Italy, with over 13,000 dead so far, the most of any country, morgues overflowed with bodies, caskets piled up in churches, and doctors were forced to decide which desperately ill patient would get a breathing machine.
England’s Wimbledon tennis tournament has also been canceled for the first time since World War II.
In Asia, India’s highest court ordered news media and social media sites to carry the government’s “official version” of developments, echoing actions taken in other countries to curb independent reporting.
Meanwhile China – where the outbreak began late last year – yesterday reported just 36 new COVID-19 cases.