Is Europe On The Brink Of Another COVID Disaster?

Bhubaneswar: According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), the cumulative tally of COVID-19 in WHO’s European region (comprising 53 countries) has crossed 78 million.

The WHO stated this number has exceeded the total number of COVID-19 cases so far in South East Asia, Eastern Mediterranean region, Western Pacific, and Africa combined which is a matter of great concern.

WHO Europe Director Jans Kluge said in a presser, “We are once again at the epicentre.” The EU’s most populous country Germany set a new record for daily infections, with nearly 34,000 new cases over the past 24 hours, according to the Robert Koch Institute.

“According to ‘One reliable projection’ the current trajectory would mean another half a million COVID-19 deaths, by February 2022,” Kluge noted.

The WHO has blamed the surge in cases in Europe to laxity in public health and social measures, apart from inadequate vaccination coverage.

WHO Emergencies Director Michael Ryan cautioned: “I think it’s a warning shot for the world to see what’s happening in Europe despite the availability of vaccination.”

Few days back, the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC)’s COVID-19 maps revealed that the epidemiologic situation has significantly worsened in seven European Union Member States – Bulgaria, Croatia, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, and Slovenia.

Croatia also hit a new daily record, with 6,310 people testing positive, following in the footsteps of Russia which has repeatedly shattered its own records in recent weeks.

The number of new daily cases has been rising steadily for weeks in Europe, with a total of about 250,000 cases, according to reports. Deaths are on the rise too, with around 3,600 registered daily across the continent.

Over the past seven days, Russia has led the rise with more than 8,100 deaths, followed by Ukraine with over 3,800 deaths and Romania with 3,100 deaths.

WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said countries that have immunized more than 40 per cent of their populations should stop and instead donate their doses to developing countries that have yet to offer their citizens a first dose.

More than 60 countries have started giving booster doses to combat waning immunity before winter, when another Covid-19 wave is expected.

Till November 5, around 25 crore cases of COVID-19 have been detected since the first case was reported from China. More than 53 lakh persons suffering from COVID-19 have died due to the coronavirus disease across the world so far.

In India, which witnessed a horror of the second wave of COVID-19 earlier this year, people have surely let their guards down. Thanks to the festival season, the markets are back in business, and our crowds never disappoint when it comes to celebrations.

Apart from crowding and violation of COVID guidelines, the cases of the AY.4.2 variant are on the rise, these contribute to the fear that COVID third wave may hit India soon, health experts warned.