Friday, 16 Apr 2021

COVID-19 spreads to more countries as China sees cases drop to lowest level in weeks

Iranians hoarded medical supplies, Italians urged doctors out of retirement and South Koreans prepared to pump billions into relief efforts Tuesday as the virus epidemic firmed its hold around the globe.

Mushrooming outbreaks in the Mideast, Europe and South Korea contrasted with optimism in China, where thousands of recovered patients were going home. A growing outbreak in the United States led schools and subways to sanitize, quickened a search for a vaccine, and spread fears of vulnerability for nursing home residents.

“We have moved to a new stage in the fight,” said Dow Constantine, the political leader in King County, Washington, which is home to Seattle. All six U.S. fatalities from COVID-19 have been in Washington state and Constantine said his county is buying a hotel to become a hospital for isolated patients.

World Health Organization leader Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said outbreaks in South Korea, Italy, Iran and Japan were the agency’s greatest concern. He said the virus was uniquely capable of community transmission but could be contained with the right measures.

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