Epidemiological Update: Novel coronavirus (COVID-19) (28 February 2020)
Pan American Health Organization
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Global Situation Summary: Since the Pan American Health Organization / World Health Organization (PAHO/WHO) epidemiological update on novel coronavirus published on 14 February 2020 – and as of 28 February 2020, an additional 34,562 cases of COVID-19 have been reported worldwide including 1,475 additional deaths. Twenty-five new countries reported COVID-19 cases for the first time. Between 31 December 2019 and 28 February 2020, a total of 83,631 laboratory-confirmed cases of COVID-19 including 2,858 deaths have been reported from 51 countries. Most of the cases (94%) and deaths (98%) are in China and within China; Hubei Province has accounted for the majority of cases (83%) and of deaths (96%). The number of reported cases in China and potentially in other countries is most likely an underestimation, considering testing capacity, criteria, and the scope of the case definition, along with the occurrence of mild and asymptomatic cases. Based on findings from a WHO-China Joint Mission as of 25 February, the epidemic peaked and plateaued between 23 January and 2 February in China and has been declining steadily since then. However, while still a small percentage, an increasing proportion of cases are now being reported outside of China. Outside China, 50 countries in all 6 WHO Regions have reported confirmed cases: the Western-Pacific Region (8 countries, excluding China), South-East Region (4 countries), the Region of the Americas (4 countries), the European Region (22 countries), the Eastern Mediterranean Region (10 countries), and the African Region (2 countries). Additionally, there have been 705 cases, including 4 deaths, associated with the Diamond Princess cruise ship. Most of the cases reported in the Eastern Mediterranean Region and European Region have travel history to the Islamic Republic of Iran and Italy respectively. Situation in the Region of the Americas: Since the last update, two new countries in the region of the Americas reported COVID-19 cases for the first time – Brazil (1) and Mexico (2) – all 3 cases had travel history to Lombardy, Italy before onset of symptoms. Between 21 January and 28 February, a total of 33 confirmed cases of COVID-19 have been reported in four (4) countries of the Region of the Americas – the United States of America (15), Canada (15, including one presumptive confirmed), Brazil (1), and Mexico (2).