After weeks of lockdown in countries across Europe, many countries in the continent are beginning to ease restrictions over confidence the peak has passed.
However, World Health Organization’s (WHO) regional director for Europe, Hans Kluge, warned on Thursday that the coronavirus outbreak still remains a considerable danger.
Kluge said the UK was among four countries accounting for 72% of all COVID-19 deaths in the WHO Europe area.
During a speech he shared three statistics that outlined the scale of the problem that remains.
Cumulative cases in the European region have increased 15% over the past 14 days
Positive cases of COVID-19 have actually increased across the European region – despite confidence that lockdown measures can now be eased.
The UK has 268,620 positive cases as of Thursday, according to Johns Hopkins University – making it the highest in Europe and the fourth highest in the world.
The five European countries reporting the highest cumulative numbers of confirmed COVID-19 cases over the past 14 days are the Russian Federation, the UK, Turkey, Belarus, and Italy.
Europe still accounts for 38% of cases
The UK has had 268,620 confirmed cases of coronavirus since the pandemic began – the highest in Europe.
Spain (236,259), Italy (231,139), France (183,038) and Germany (181,198) all follow immediately behind the UK on the global cases list, according to Johns Hopkins.
The huge figures for Europe means the continent accounts for nearly two-fifths (38%) of cases across the globe.
Europe still accounts for 50% of deaths globally
Global deaths stand at 356,213 as of Thursday – and Europe accounts for approximately half of this figure.
Once again, the UK tally is the highest in Europe, standing at 37,452 – also making it the second highest in the world, behind the US (100,442).
Italy (33,072), France (28,599) and Spain (27,117) all sit immediately behind the UK, while Germany sits in ninth position with 8,449 deaths.
Spain, Italy, UK and France continue to account for 72% of all COVID-19 deaths in Europe.
With governments across the continent preparing to reopen more businesses and loosen lockdown regulations, Kluge warned: “We are not measuring lives against livelihoods, nor health against wealth.
“This is not an ‘either/or’. There is no economy without people. There can be no economic recovery without COVID-19 transmission under control.”
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