The three worrying statistics that show how bad the COVID-19 situation is in Europe

Connor Parker
·3-min read
World Health Organization (WHO) Regional Director for Europe Hans Kluge warned today the situation in Europe was as bad as it was at the height of the pandemic. (Getty)
World Health Organization regional director for Europe Hans Kluge has warned that the situation in Europe is as bad as it was at the height of the pandemic. (Getty)

As coronavirus cases rise across Europe, the World Health Organization (WHO) has sounded the alarm about how bad the situation really is.

WHO’s regional director for Europe, Hans Kluge, warned on Thursday the situation was “very serious”.

He said: “In the spring and early summer we were able to see the impact of strict lockdown measures. Our efforts, our sacrifices, paid off. In June cases hit an all-time low.

“The September case numbers, however, should serve as a wake-up call for all of us.”

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Group of children with face mask back at school after covid-19 quarantine and lockdown, learning.
Children across Europe have gone back to the classroom. (Getty)

Here are three statistics the WHO raised that show how bad the situation is in Europe.

Case numbers are higher than they were during the peak of the pandemic

Kluge pointed out that weekly case numbers have exceeded those reported when the pandemic first peaked back in March.

Last week, Europe reported more than 300,000 cases.

Nations across the continent are carrying out far more tests than they did back in March at the start of the pandemic, so it is accepted the situation was worse back then, but the rapid growth is a cause for concern.

France and Spain recorded the highest number of cases in the past two weeks, with 130,000 and 106,000 respectively.

Both nations have seen their pandemic get out of control in recent weeks despite strict new guidelines being enforced across their countries.

The UK has had the fifth-highest number of cases in the past two weeks at just over 35,000.

Read more: Why is Germany faring better than France in the Covid-19 epidemic?

crossing the border is prohibited because of the declared quarantine
crossing the border is prohibited because of the declared quarantine

Half of European countries have seen their cases rise by 10% in the past two weeks

Half of all countries in Europe have seen at least a 10% increase in cases in the past two weeks.

These include most of the high population nations across the continent, including the UK, Germany, France, Spain and Russia.

Many nations are introducing new measures to try and combat the spread, and Kluge noted that we now have much more knowledge around combating the virus than we did in March.

But, most countries are reluctant to introduce another nationwide lockdown after the last one had a devastating impact on their economies.

Seven countries have seen their coronavirus cases double in two weeks

Among the half of nations that have seen at least a 10% increase, seven of them have seen newly reported cases increase more than two-fold in the same period.

From those seven countries, Hungary and Georgia have seen by far the steepest rise, with 428% and 591% more cases than they did during the previous two week period respectively.

The other nations are:

  • The Czech Republic with a 207% increase in cases

  • Denmark with a 169% increase in cases

  • The UK with a 125% increase in cases

  • Montenegro with a 122% increase in cases

  • Norway with a 100% increase in cases

The cost has already been high

There have been 4,893,614 cases of COVID-19 across the continent.

The total number of cases is likely much higher due to the lack of testing availability at the start of the pandemic.

From those nearly five million cases recorded in Europe, WHO says 226,524 people have died.

Kluge was keen to point out that these numbers only point out part of the story, he said the cost on our economies, society and mental health has been “monumental”.

He acknowledged many people were suffering from a “fatigue” when it came to complying with guidelines aimed at stopping the rise in infections and implored nations to find ways to reach out to them.

Looking to the future Kluge said: “Where the pandemic goes from here is in our hands.

“We have fought it back before and we can fight it back again.”

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