World Covid trends

It appears for now the worst may be over in Italy and Spain for now at least, the death climb seems to have at least flattened (current total 15,362 in Italy, 11,744 in Spain) and Italy has recorded the lowest daily increase for two weeks.

Spain Virus Cases Pass Italy, Where Daily Deaths Are Falling

Spain’s confirmed cases increased by 7,026 to 124,736 over the past 24 hours, while deaths rose by 809 to 11,744. Total cases are now higher than Italy’s 124,632, where the country reported the fewest number of new deaths since March 26. In France, the total number of fatalities rose to 7,560 and the U.K. reported its deadliest day yet with an increase of 708 deaths.

The virus has crippled Europe at different times with most countries now in some form of lockdown, even as nations like Sweden and the U.K. were more reluctant to take drastic measures earlier. Governments and policy-makers are scrambling to find ways to mitigate the damage with entire economies headed into deep recession and a common approach still elusive.

Spain to extend state of emergency to April 26 as rise in infections slows

Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez said on Saturday he would ask parliament to extend lockdown measures by 15 days until April 26, as the rate of new coronavirus infections and deaths slowed again in one of the world’s worst-hit countries.

But they still have significant problems – RNZ Live:

As nursing and care homes across Europe try to stop the spread of Covid-19 among the elderly, France has revealed 1416 rest-home residents have been killed by the virus.

Alarming cases have emerged in the Spanish capital Madrid, with reports of dozens of deaths in two nursing homes.

Residents were taken to hospital in the Italian city of Naples after a care home outbreak claimed several lives.

Cases have also been reported in 100 care homes around the Swedish capital. Local media SVT say more than 400 people in the Stockholm region have been infected and about 50 have died.

A Glasgow rest home has had 13 residents die in one week following a suspected coronavirus outbreak. Two staff members have tested positive for the virus and are being treated in hospital, but the rest home says the residents were not tested.

France hasn’t been getting much attention here but has the fourth highest number of deaths recorded and the third highest deaths per million population.

Covid-19: 7,560 deaths in France

The number of deaths in France in hospitals from Covid-19 in the last 24 hours is 441, the director of the health service announced this evening.

This is a drop on yesterday’s figure which set a record at 588 deaths in the preceding 24 hours.

The total number of hospital deaths in France since the beginning of the epidemic is now 5,532.

But official French figures were understating the real toll.

In retirement homes and other medicalised institutions which were not counted in the figures before last Thursday, the number of deaths has been given as 2,028, bringing the total number of deaths in France to 7,560.

Health service director Jérôme Salomon said 28,143 people were currently hospitalised, 711 more than yesterday. Of hospitalised patients, 6,838 are in intensive care, an increase of 176 people in 24 hours. Friday’s figures gave 263 people admitted to intensive care in the preceding 24 hours.

India reports 2,902 cases of coronavirus, with 68 deaths

India reported six fresh deaths in the last 24 hours due to novel coronavirus (Covid-19) taking the total death toll to 68 and the total number of confirmed cases to 2,902, said the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare on Saturday, April 4.

But India was relatively late getting infected and with deaths now reported from Asia’s largest slum in Mumbai there are fears of much worse.

UK – ‘We’re on our knees’ says nurse

Shirley Watts, an operating theatre nurse at a hospital in Basildon, posted a video to a Facebook group after a long and difficult shift in ICU treating patients with coronavirus.

The US is currently recording about a third of the world total daily increase in cases, and deaths are also climbing more quickly – 1,328 yesterday and already 902 today (GMT). New York is bearing the brunt with about half the US deaths:  New York reels as 630 die in a day, the state’s bleakest toll yet

Coronavirus-related illnesses killed 630 people in the last day in New York state, Governor Andrew Cuomo said on Saturday, in the grimmest 24 hours yet for the U.S. state hit hardest by the pandemic.

The novel coronavirus has now killed 3,565 people in the state and the situation is particularly worrying on Long Island, east of New York City, where the number of cases “is like a fire spreading,” Cuomo told a news conference.

Health experts calculate that New York, home both to bustling Manhattan and hilly farm country stretching to the Canadian border, might be around a week away from the worst point in the health crisis which has killed about 60,000 people worldwide.

“We’re not yet at the apex, we’re getting closer … Our reading of the projections is we’re somewhere in the seven-day range,” Cuomo said.

“It’s only been 30 days since our first case,” he said. “It feels like an entire lifetime.”

In contrast California had also seemed to be hit at a similar time to New York but lockdown quick and seems to have the virus under far better control.

All countries are making mistakes (understandable in such a rapidly changing crisis) –  Exclusive: Pressed by Trump, U.S. pushed unproven coronavirus treatment guidance

In mid-March, President Donald Trump personally pressed federal health officials to make malaria drugs available to treat the novel coronavirus, though they had been untested for COVID-19, two sources told Reuters.

Shortly afterward, the federal government published highly unusual guidance informing doctors they had the option to prescribe the drugs, with key dosing information based on unattributed anecdotes rather than peer-reviewed science.

While Trump, in a series of tweets and press comments, had made his opinions on the drugs, chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine, well known, the nature of his behind-the-scenes intervention has not been previously reported. The guidance, published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, has received scant notice outside medical circles.

The episode reveals how the president’s efforts could change the nature of drug oversight, a field long governed by strict rules of science and testing. Rarely, if ever, has a U.S. president lobbied regulators and health officials to focus their efforts on specific unproven drugs.

“The president is short-circuiting the process with his gut feelings,” said Jeffrey Flier, a former dean of Harvard Medical School. “We are in an emergency and we need to rely on our government to ensure that all these potential therapies are tested in the most effective and objective way.”

Not only life and death decisions being made by leaders around the world, but also life and death tweets.


Leave a comment


  1. Donald Trump has announced 1000 military personnel are being deployed to New York City.
    – RNZ Live

    • Duker

       /  5th April 2020

      Didnt Trump last year change the weather maps of the meteorologists about a hurricanes track ?

  2. David

     /  5th April 2020

    Global survey of doctors found the most promising drug was the same one Trump wanted. Its in clinical trials in China, Europe, UK and in Asia. The research on it out of China and France has been published in the leading medical journals. Australia has just waived regulatory protocols to fast track its use.
    This rush to not wanting hydroxychloroquine to work because Trump thought it showed a lot of promise is quite disturbing. These are not normal times and we need to try these things. Trudeau is promoting gout medication, a head lice cure is the latest why not try and keep positive.

    • But the use of non-proven drugs no matter how promising should not be promoted by a president in social media before suitable checks and precautions have been taken.

      Trump has a well known history of changing advice, often by a lot, and of straight out bullshit.

      • David

         /  5th April 2020

        Why not offer some hope and tell the country what is looking promising when the media is feeding the populations 24 hour doom and gloom. We need a cheer leader and his point is not without merit, there are some promising trials of the drug which is why the testing of it has been hugely ramped up and in countries with no love of Trump.
        Ardern has a history of lying and changing advice but she does it like a politician so its fine Trump is a NY property developer and his delivery can be jarring but they both desperately want whats best for their citizens at the end of the day.

      • Alan Wilkinson

         /  5th April 2020

        To what degree had suitable checks and precautions not been taken? The drug is already approved for use and is taken by millions of people at risk of malaria. When the alternative is nothing, it is unethical to block something that is promising and known to be safe if properly prescribed.

        • Drugs and approved and used for some diseases won’t necessarily be effective for others – and potentially could be detrimental and even fatal. Rushing into treatment recommendations is risky. And dosage recommendations take time to work out. Just recommending something for a specific ailment without details or a track record risk overdoses, as seems to have already happened with people self medicating.

          • Alan Wilkinson

             /  5th April 2020

            Yes, but this one is extremely widely used and adverse indications very well known. When time is of the essence value outweighs risk until proven otherwise.

    • Pink David

       /  5th April 2020

      “This rush to not wanting hydroxychloroquine to work because Trump thought it showed a lot of promise is quite disturbing.”

      I notice no one seems to be reporting the truth behind the fish tank cleaner women, despite the fake news breathlessly reporting the story a few days ago entirely to discredit Trump.

  3. David

     /  5th April 2020

    The question has to be asked when the lock down ends as it inevitably must we just get wave 2 then shutdown again then wave 3…
    The only way out of this is to lock all borders and keep vulnerable people on lock down until a vaccine happens or the damn thing mutates itself to something less deathly.

  4. Blazer

     /  5th April 2020

    Invermectin an animal drench is supposed to kill the virus.

  5. Easter in the US looks like being bad – Trump warns of rough week ahead: ‘There will be death’

    “This will probably be the toughest week — between this week and next week,” Trump said Saturday at the beginning of his coronavirus task force briefing at the White House.

    “There will be a lot of death, unfortunately. But a lot less death than if this wasn’t done,” Trump said of the nationwide precautions underway. “But there will be death.”

    Trump said he’s deploying 1,000 medical military personnel to New York, the epicenter of the United States outbreak. Reinforcing his hope for the use of the malaria drug, hydroxychloroquine, in treatment against COVID-19, Trump said the United States is stockpiling 29 million doses of the drug.

    “What do you have to lose? Take it,” Trump said of hydroxychloroquine.

    The warning of the tough days ahead is because infections have not yet hit their apex in certain hotspots.

    Dr. Deborah Birx, who serves on the White House coronavirus task force, said the modeling shows that the three major hotspots the country in New York, Detroit and Louisiana will peak in the next six or seven days. She urged vigilance in social distancing to mitigate the spread.

    “We will move heaven and Earth to safeguard our great American citizens,” Trump said. “We will continue to use every power, every authority, every single resource we’ve got to keep our people healthy, safe, secure and to get this thing over with.

    “We want to finish this war. We have to get back to work.”

    Trump expressed optimism that the United States will be back open for business by the end of the summer and safe for thousands of people to gather to celebrate his reelection nomination.

    The end of the summer in the US is September. That’s a big shift from a week or so ago when Trump hoped business would be going again by Easter Sunday.

  6. Alan Wilkinson

     /  5th April 2020

    The worst current news seems to be failures of proposed antibody tests to prove accurate.

    • duperez

       /  5th April 2020

      Science is a bit of a bugger isn’t it. Trump still getting into talking about medications this morning was idiotic and irresponsible.

      I think that he continues to go down that track to flaunt his scientific and medical knowledge. He told the world he’s very good at that stuff.

      And I think he doesn’t want to waste the effort of learning a big word so he chucks it around as much as he can. “Hydroxychloroquine” – he relishes saying it, just like a baby putting a newly found object in it’s mouth and in wonder at what it feels like keeps pushing it about with his tongue.

      You know how things work. His worst than the thickest layman’s expectation, coming up with a vaccine being like turning on a light switch, summed it up. You may have seen the headline “There Is an Antidote to Our Fear. It’s Called Leadership.”

      • Alan Wilkinson

         /  5th April 2020

        Not correct that there was no study of effectiveness. There are a couple of limited studies. When thousands of people are currently dying there is no time to rigidly use the “most effective and objective” standard to deny a chance to live – and to avoid the ventilator from which few patients recover.

      • David

         /  5th April 2020

        Trump has touted Remdesivir and a couple of HIV medications as well should we not try these ones either, they are also in wide clinical trials too in countries outside of America. Trump is meeting with some of the best minds globally on this drug its not as if he is just sitting around googling for what might work.
        What has your beloved Ardern proposed ? What demonstration has she shown that she has any interest in Covid aside from locking down her subjects. What medications is she using on our ICU patients ?

        • duperez

           /  6th April 2020

          What’s your Prime Minister using? I don’t know. She’s not up there telling us that stuff trying to sound all authoritative about scientific detail and trying to big note it as if she knows and understands the ins and outs and has a handle on it. Enough of a handle to risk other than caution to enter the minds of the audience.

          You might not like that stance, preferring her to bandy things around and have the ignorant acting on their perceptions of what she said.

          Trump has been irresponsible in that sense. He’s all piss and wind and bravado.
          The good thing is that with 328 million people there who cares if a few simpletons act on their perceptions of what he said and kill themselves. They’re dispensable, by chucking the big words around he’s reinforced what he told the world a time back about ‘knowing this stuff, being really good at it, the doctors being amazed.’
          Hell, if he hadn’t gone into property he could have been a brain surgeon or a Nobel winning research scientist.

          Trump meeting with some of the best minds globally on this drug (or anything) and him not just sitting around googling for what might work? Maybe it’s just that I believe the many many reports of him ignoring the advice of experts and acting on whim and impulse.

          • duperez

             /  6th April 2020

            And in the news today to show how it works:
            “Rudolph W. Giuliani, who was in the center of the impeachment storm earlier this year as an unpaid private attorney for President Trump, has cast himself in a new role: as personal science adviser to a president eager to find ways to short circuit the coronavirus epidemic.
            In one-on-one phone calls with Trump, Giuliani said, he has been touting the use of an anti-malarial drug cocktail that has shown some early promise in treating covid-19, but whose effectiveness has not yet been proved. He said he now spends his days on the phone with doctors, coronavirus patients and hospital executives promoting the treatment, which Trump has also publicly lauded.
            “I discussed it with the president after he talked about it,” Giuliani said in an interview. “I told him what I had on the drugs.”


  7. Pink David

     /  5th April 2020

    Well, the main stream media is finally starting to question the people behind the extreme reaction to this virus and are looking at their tack record. The FMD response was a face, yet has become the model the whole world has followed.

    • David

       /  5th April 2020

      I am surprised more people arnt asking what happens when the lock down ends and everyone goes out and about again, virus is still floating around and will explode again and all they have done is blown out the debt.


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