The scientist consensus every day new virus worried present day human civilization: it is during our darkest moments that we must focus to see light

DR.S.I.SHELLEY,NY USA: The COVID-19 pandemic is an ongoing global pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). The novel virus was first identified from an outbreak in the Chinese city of Wuhan in December 2019, and attempts to contain it there failed, allowing it to spread across the globe. The World Health Organization (WHO) declared a Public Health Emergency of International Concern on 30 January 2020 and a pandemic on 11 March 2020. As of 23 December 2021, the pandemic had caused more than 277 million cases and 5.37 million deaths, making it one of the deadliest in history.
COVID-19 symptoms range from none to deadly. Severe illness is more likely in elderly patients and those with certain underlying medical conditions. COVID-19 is airborne, spread via air contaminated by microscopic versions (viral particles). The risk of infection is highest among people in close proximity, but can occur over longer distances, particularly indoors in poorly ventilated areas. Transmission rarely occurs via contaminated surfaces or fluids. Infected persons are typically contagious for 10 days, often beginning before or without symptoms Mutations produced many strains (variants) with varying degrees of infectivity and virulence.
COVID-19 vaccines have been approved and widely distributed in various countries since December 2020. Other recommended preventive measures include social distancing, masking, improving ventilation and air filtration, and quarantining those who have been exposed or are symptomatic. Treatments include monoclonal antibodies and symptom control. Governmental interventions include travel restrictions, lockdowns, business restrictions and closures, workplace hazard controls, quarantines, testing systems, and tracing contacts of the infected.
The pandemic triggered severe social and economic disruption around the world, including the largest global recession since the Great Depression Widespread supply shortages, including food shortages, were caused by supply chain disruption and panic buying. The resultant near-global lockdowns saw an unprecedented pollution decrease. Educational institutions and public areas were partially or fully closed in many jurisdictions, and many events were cancelled or postponed. Misinformation circulated through social media and mass media, and political tensions intensified. The pandemic raised issues of racial and geographic discrimination, health equity, and the balance between public health imperatives and individual rights.
The pandemic is known by several names. It may be referred to as the “coronavirus pandemic despite the existence of other human coronaviruses that have caused epidemics and outbreaks (e.g. SARS)
During the initial outbreak in Wuhan, the virus and disease were commonly referred to as “corona virus”, “Wuhan coronavirus”,the corona virus outbreak” and the “Wuhan coronavirus outbreak with the disease sometimes called “Wuhan pneumonia In January 2020, the WHO recommended 2019-nCoVand 2019-nCoV acute respiratory disease as interim names for the virus and disease per 2015 international guidelines against using geographical locations (e.g. Wuhan, China), animal species, or groups of people in disease and virus names in part to prevent social stigma WHO finalized the official names COVID-19 and SARS-CoV-2 on 11 February 2020 EXPERTexplained: CO for corona, VI for virus, D for disease and 19 for when the outbreak was first identified (31 December 2019 WHO additionally uses “the COVID-19 virus” and “the virus responsible for COVID-19” in public communications WHO names variants of concern and variants of interest using Greek letters. The initial practice of naming them according to where the variants were identified (e.g. Delta began as the “Indian variant”) is no longer common. A more systematic naming scheme reflects the variant’s PANGO lineage (e.g., Omicron’s lineage is B.1.1.529) and is used for other variantsSARS-CoV-2 is a newly discovered virus that is closely related to bat coronaviruses pangolin corona viruses, and SARS-CoV The first known outbreak started in Wuhan, Hubei, China, in November 2019. Many early cases were linked to people who had visited the Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market there, but it is possible that human-to-human transmission began earlierThe scientific consensus is that the virus is most likely of zoonotic origin, from bats or another closely-related mammal Despite this, the subject has generated extensive speculation about alternate origins The origin controversy heightened geopolitical divisions, notably between the United States and ChinaThe earliest known infected person fell ill on 1 December 2019. That individual did not have a connection with the later wet market clusterHowever, an earlier case may have occurred on 17 November. Two-thirds of the initial case cluster were linked with the market. Molecular clock analysis suggests that the index case is likely to have been infected between mid-October and mid-November 2019

Official “case” counts refer to the number of people who have been tested for COVID-19 and whose test has been confirmed positive according to official protocols whether or not they experienced symptomatic disease. Many countries, early on, had official policies to not test those with only mild symptoms.Multiple studies claimed that total infections are considerably greater than reported cases The strongest risk factors for severe illness are obesity, complications of diabetes, anxiety disorders, and the total number of conditionsOn 9 April 2020, preliminary results found that in Gangelt, the centre of a major infection cluster in Germany, 15 percent of a population sample tested positive for antibodies.Screening for COVID-19 in pregnant women in New York City, and blood donors in the Netherlands, found rates of positive antibody tests that indicated more infections than reported.Seroprevalence-based estimates are conservative as some studies show that persons with mild symptoms do not have detectable antibodies
An analysis in early 2020 of cases by age in China indicated that a relatively low proportion of cases occurred in individuals under 20It was not clear whether this was because young people were less likely to be infected, or less likely to develop symptoms and be tested.A retrospective cohort study in China found that children and adults were just as likely to be infected[Initial estimates of the basic reproduction number (R0) for COVID-19 in January were between 1.4 and 2.5 but a subsequent analysis claimed that it may be about 5.7 (with a 95 percent confidence interval of 3.8 to 8.9 R0 can vary across populations/circumstances and is not to be confused with the effective reproduction number (commonly just called R), which takes into account mitigation efforts and immunity coming from vaccines and/or prior infection.
As of December 2021, we find that the number of cases has continued to climb; this is due to several factors including new COVID-19 variants. As of 20 December there are 275,099,577 confirmed infected individuals worldwide

Semi-log plot of weekly new cases of COVID-19 in the world and the current top six countries (mean with deaths)

COVID-19 total cases per 100 000 population from selected countries

COVID-19 active cases per 100 000 population from selected countries
SCIENTIST INTEGRITY SEE THE GRAPH reference Wikipedia for graph

Gravediggers wearing protection against contamination bury the body of a man suspected of having died of Covid-19 in the cemetery of Vila Alpina, east side of São Paulo, in April 2020.
As of 23 December 2021, more than 5.37 million deaths had been attributed to COVID-19. The first confirmed death was in Wuhan on 9 January 2020.] These numbers vary by region and over time, influenced by testing volume, healthcare system quality, treatment options, government response time since the initial outbreak, and population characteristics, such as age, sex, and overall healthMultiple measures are used to quantify mortality]Official death counts typically include people who died after testing positive. Such counts exclude deaths without a test Conversely, deaths of people who died from underlying conditions following a positive test may be included Countries such as Belgium include deaths from suspected cases, including those without a test, thereby increasing countsOfficial death counts have been claimed to underreport the actual death toll, because excess mortality (the number of deaths in a period compared to a long-term average) data show an increase in deaths that is not explained by COVID-19 deaths alone. Using such data, estimates of the true number of deaths from COVID-19 worldwide have included a range from 9.5 to 18.6 million by The Economist as well as over 10.3 million by the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation Such deaths include deaths due to healthcare capacity constraints and priorities, as well as reluctance to seek care (to avoid possible infection).The time between symptom onset and death ranges from 6 to 41 days, typically about 14 days Mortality rates increase as a function of age. People at the greatest mortality risk are the elderly and those with underlying conditions.

Semi-log plot of weekly deaths due to COVID-19 in the world and top six current countries (mean with cases).

COVID-19 deaths per 100 000 population from selected countries
WHO provided two reporting codes for COVID-19: U07.1 when confirmed by laboratory testing and U07.2 for clinically or epidemiological diagnosis where laboratory confirmation is inconclusive or not available. The US did not implement U07.2 for mortality statistics “because laboratory test results are not typically reported on death certificates in the US, while U07.1 is used “If the death certificate reports terms such as ‘probable COVID-19’ or ‘likely COVID-19’
Infection fatality ratio (IFR)
The infection fatality ratio (IFR) is the cumulative number of deaths attributed to the disease divided by the cumulative number of infected individuals (including asymptomatic and undiagnosed infections). It is expressed in percentage points (not as a decimal Other studies refer to this metric as the ‘infection fatality risk’In November 2020, a review article in Nature reported estimates of population-weighted IFRs for various countries, excluding deaths in elderly care facilities, and found a median range of 0.24% to 1.49%.IFRs rise as a function of age (from 0.002% at age 10 and 0.01% at age 25, to 0.4% at age 55, 1.4% at age 65, 4.6% at age 75, and 15% at age 85). These rates vary by a factor of ~10,000 across the age groups For comparison the IFR for middle-aged adults is two orders of magnitude more likely than the annualised risk of a fatal automobile accident and far more dangerous than seasonal influenzaIn December 2020, a systematic review and meta-analysis estimated that population-weighted IFR was 0.5% to 1% in some countries (France, Netherlands, New Zealand, and Portugal), 1% to 2% in other countries (Australia, England, Lithuania, and Spain), and about 2.5% in Italy. This study reported that most of the differences reflected corresponding differences in the population’s age structure and the age-specific pattern of infections.
Case fatality ratio (CFR)
Another metric in assessing death rate is the case fatality ratio (CFR), which is the ratio of deaths to diagnoses. This metric can be misleading because of the delay between symptom onset and death and because testing focuses on symptomatic individualsBased on Johns Hopkins University statistics, the global CFR is 1.94 percent (5,379,682 deaths for 277,238,940 cases) as of 23 December 2021 The number varies by region and has generally declined over time.
Symptoms of COVID-19 are variable, ranging from mild symptoms to severe illness.[88][89] Common symptoms include headache, loss of smell and taste, nasal congestion and runny nose, cough, muscle pain, sore throat, fever, diarrhea, and breathing difficulties People with the same infection may have different symptoms, and their symptoms may change over time. Three common clusters of symptoms have been identified: one respiratory symptom cluster with cough, sputum, shortness of breath, and fever; a musculoskeletal symptom cluster with muscle and joint pain, headache, and fatigue; a cluster of digestive symptoms with abdominal pain, vomiting, and diarrhea.[90] In people without prior ear, nose, and throat disorders, loss of taste combined with loss of smell is associated with COVID-19 and is reported in as many as 88% of cases.
Of people who show symptoms, 81% develop only mild to moderate symptoms (up to mild pneumonia), while 14% develop severe symptoms (dyspnea, hypoxia, or more than 50% lung involvement on imaging) and 5% of patients suffer critical symptoms (respiratory failure, shock, or multiorgan dysfunction). At least a third of the people who are infected with the virus do not develop noticeable symptoms at any point in time These asymptomatic carriers tend not to get tested and can spread the disease. Other infected people will develop symptoms later, called “pre-symptomatic”, or have very mild symptoms and can also spread the virus.
As is common with infections, there is a delay between the moment a person first becomes infected and the appearance of the first symptoms. The median delay for COVID-19 is four to five days. Most symptomatic people experience symptoms within two to seven days after exposure, and almost all will experience at least one symptom within 12 days
Most people recover from the acute phase of the disease. However, some people – over half of a cohort of home-isolated young adults– continue to experience a range of effects, such as fatigue, for months after recovery, a condition called long COVID; long-term damage to organs has been observed. Multi-year studies are underway to further investigate the long-term effects of the disease

The respiratory route of spread of COVID-19, encompassing larger droplets and aerosols.
The disease is mainly transmitted via the respiratory route when people inhale droplets and small airborne particles (that form an aerosol) that infected people exhale as they breathe, talk, cough, sneeze, or sing.Infected people are more likely to transmit COVID-19 when they are physically close. However, infection can occur over longer distances, particularly indoors.Infectivity can occur 1-3 days before the onset of symptoms Infected persons can spread the disease even if they are pre-symptomatic or asymptomatic Most commonly, the peak viral load in upper respiratory tract samples occurs close to the time of symptom onset and declines after the first week after symptoms begin.[110] Current evidence suggests a duration of viral shedding and the period of infectiousness of up to 10 days following symptom onset for persons with mild to moderate COVID-19, and a up to 20 days for persons with severe COVID-19, including immunocompromisedpersonsInfectious particles range in size from aerosols that remain suspended in the air for long periods of time to larger droplets that remain airborne or fall to the ground. Additionally, COVID-19 research has redefined the traditional understanding of how respiratory viruses are transmitted The largest droplets of respiratory fluid do not travel far, and can be inhaled or land on mucous membranes on the eyes, nose, or mouth to infect.[114] Aerosols are highest in concentration when people are in close proximity, which leads to easier viral transmission when people are physically close but airborne transmission can occur at longer distances, mainly in locations that are poorly ventilated in those conditions small particles can remain suspended in the air for minutes to hours
The number of people generally infected by one infected person varies as only 10 to 20% of people are responsible for the disease’s spread It often spreads in clusters, where infections can be traced back to an index case or geographical location Often in these instances, superspreading events occur, where many people are infected by one personSARS CoV 2 belongs to the broad family of viruses known as coronaviruses. It is a positive-sense single-stranded RNA (+ssRNA) virus, with a single linear RNA segment. Coronaviruses infect humans, other mammals, including livestock and companion animals, and avian species Human coronaviruses are capable of causing illnesses ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS, fatality rate ~34%). SARS-CoV-2 is the seventh known coronavirus to infect people, after 229E, NL63, OC43, HKU1, MERS-CoV, and the original SARS-CoV.Viral genetic sequence data can provide critical information about whether viruses separated by time and space are likely to be epidemiologically linked.[123] With a sufficient number of sequenced genomes, it is possible to reconstruct a phylogenetic tree of the mutation history of a family of viruses. By 12 January 2020, five genomes of SARS CoV 2 had been isolated from Wuhan and reported by the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CCDC) and other institutions the number of genomes increased to 42 by 30 January 2020 A phylogenetic analysis of those samples showed they were “highly related with at most seven mutations relative to a common ancestor”, implying that the first human infection occurred in November or December 2019 Examination of the topology of the phylogenetic tree at the start of the pandemic also found high similarities between human isolates As of 21 August 2021, 3,422 SARS CoV 2 genomes, belonging to 19 strains, sampled on all continents except Antarctica were publicly available

Demonstration of a nasopharyngeal swab for COVID-19 testing
The standard methods of testing for presence of SARS-CoV-2 are nucleic acid testswhich detects the presence of viral RNA fragments As these tests detect RNA but not infectious virus, its “ability to determine duration of infectivity of patients is limited The test is typically done on respiratory samples obtained by a nasopharyngeal swab; however, a nasal swab or sputum sample may also be used Results are generally available within hours The WHO has published several testing protocols for the disease.Chest CT scans may be helpful to diagnose COVID-19 in individuals with a high clinical suspicion of infection but are not recommended for routine screening. Bilateral multilobar ground-glass opacities with a peripheral, asymmetric, and posterior distribution are common in early infection Subpleural dominance, crazy paving (lobular septal thickening with variable alveolar filling), and consolidation may appear as the disease progresses Characteristic imaging features on chest radiographs and computed tomography (CT) of people who are symptomatic include asymmetric peripheral ground-glass opacities without pleural effusions
: COVID-19 § Prevention, Face masks during the COVID-19 pandemic, and pandemic Without pandemic containment measures – such as social distancing, vaccination, and face masks – pathogens can spread exponentially This graphic shows how early adoption of containment measures tends to protect wider swaths of the population.
Preventive measures to reduce the chances of infection include getting vaccinated, staying at home, wearing a mask in public, avoiding crowded places, keeping distance from others, ventilating indoor spaces, managing potential exposure durations,washing hands with soap and water often and for at least twenty seconds, practicing good respiratory hygiene, and avoiding touching the eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.
Those diagnosed with COVID-19 or who believe they may be infected are advised by the CDC to stay home except to get medical care, call ahead before visiting a healthcare provider, wear a face mask before entering the healthcare provider’s office and when in any room or vehicle with another person, cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue, regularly wash hands with soap and water and avoid sharing personal household

A doctor at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center receiving a COVID-19 vaccination
A COVID 19 vaccine is a vaccine intended to provide acquired immunity against severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS CoV 2), the virus that causes coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID 19). Prior to the COVID 19 pandemic, an established body of knowledge existed about the structure and function of coronaviruses causing diseases like severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS). This knowledge accelerated the development of various vaccine platforms during early 2020 The initial focus of SARS-CoV-2 vaccines was on preventing symptomatic, often severe illness On 10 January 2020, the SARS-CoV-2 genetic sequence data was shared through GISAID, and by 19 March, the global pharmaceutical industry announced a major commitment to address COVID 19.The COVID 19 vaccines are widely credited for their role in reducing the severity and death caused by COVID 19.
Many countries have implemented phased distribution plans that prioritize those at highest risk of complications, such as the elderly, and those at high risk of exposure and transmission, such as healthcare workers
As of late-December 2021, more than 4.49 billion people had received one or more doses(8+ million in total) in over 197 countries. The Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine was the most widely used
Main article: Treatment and management of COVID-19
For the first two years of the pandemic no specific, effective treatment or cure was available In 2021, the European Medicines Agency’s (EMA) Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use (CHMP) approved the oral antiviral protease inhibitor, Paxlovid (nirmatrelvir plus AIDS drug ritonavir), to treat adult patients.FDA later gave it an EUA.
A critically ill patient receiving invasive ventilation in the intensive care unit of the Heart Institute, University of São Paulo. Due to a shortage of mechanical ventilators, a bridge ventilator is being used to automatically actuate a bag valve mask.
Most cases of COVID-19 are mild. In these, supportive care includes medication such as paracetamol or NSAIDs to relieve symptoms (fever,body aches, cough), adequate intake of oral fluids and rest Good personal hygiene and a healthy diet are also recommended.Supportive care includes treatment to relieve symptoms, fluid therapy, oxygen support and prone positioning, and medications or devices to support other affected vital organs More severe cases may need treatment in hospital. In those with low oxygen levels, use of the glucocorticoid dexamethasone is recommended, to reduce mortality.] Noninvasive ventilation and, ultimately, admission to an intensive care unit for mechanical ventilation may be required to support breathing.[164] Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) has been used to address the issue of respiratory failure.
Existing drugs such as hydroxychloroquine, lopinavir/ritonavir, ivermectin and so-called early treatment are not recommended by US or European health authorities Two monoclonal antibody-based therapies are available for early use in high-risk cases.] The antiviral remdesivir is available in the US, Canada, Australia, and several other countries, with varying restrictions; however, it is not recommended for use with mechanical ventilation, and is discouraged altogether by the World Health Organization (WHO due to limited evidence of its efficacy

World Health Organization video describing how variants proliferate in unvaccinated areas
Several variants have been named by WHO and labeled as a variant of concern (VoC) or a variant of interest (VoI). They share the more infectious D614G mutation Delta dominated and then eliminated earlier VoC from most jurisdictions. Omicron’s immune escape ability may allow it to spread via breakthrough infections, which in turn may allow it to coexist with Delta, which more often infects the unvaccinated
AT A GLANCE VIRUS DISCOVERED BY SCIENTIST follow refeencelinkwikipedia
Name Lineage Detected Countries Priority
UK 190 VoC
South Africa 140 VoC
India 170 VoC
Brazil 90 VoC
Peru 30 VoI
Colombia 57 VoI
Botswana 77 VoC[174]

The severity of COVID-19 varies. The disease may take a mild course with few or no symptoms, resembling other common upper respiratory diseases such as the common cold. In 3–4% of cases (7.4% for those over age 65) symptoms are severe enough to cause hospitalization Mild cases typically recover within two weeks, while those with severe or critical diseases may take three to six weeks to recover. Among those who have died, the time from symptom onset to death has ranged from two to eight weeks The Italian IstitutoSuperiore di Sanità reported that the median time between the onset of symptoms and death was twelve days, with seven being hospitalised. However, people transferred to an ICU had a median time of ten days between hospitalisation and death. Prolonged prothrombin time and elevated C-reactive protein levels on admission to the hospital are associated with severe course of COVID-19 and with a transfer to ICU.
Main article: Public health mitigation of COVID-19
The CDC and WHO advise that masks (such as worn here by Taiwanese president Tsai Ing-wen) reduce the spread of SARS-CoV-2.
Many countries attempted to slow or stop the spread of COVID-19 by recommending, mandating or prohibiting behavior changes, while others relied primarily on providing information. Measures ranged from public advisories to stringent lockdowns. Outbreak control strategies are divided into containment and mitigation. These can be pursued sequentially or simultaneously.

Goals of mitigation include delaying and reducing peak burden on healthcare (flattening the curve) and lessening overall cases and health impact Moreover, progressively greater increases in healthcare capacity (raising the line) such as by increasing bed count, personnel, and equipment, help to meet increased demand.[183]
Containment is undertaken to stop an outbreak from spreading into the general population. Infected individuals are isolated while they are infectious. The people they have interacted with are contacted and isolated for long enough to ensure that they are either not infected or no longer contagious. Successful containment or suppression reduces Rt to less than 1.[
Screening is the starting point for containment. Screening is done by checking for symptoms to identify infected individuals, who can then be isolated and/or offered treatment
Should containment fail, efforts focus on mitigation: measures taken to slow the spread and limit its effects on the healthcare system and society.
Successful mitigation delays and decreases the epidemic peak, known as “flattening the epidemic curve This decreases the risk of overwhelming health services and provides more time for developing vaccines and treatmentsIndividual behavior changed in many jurisdictions. Many people worked from home instead of at their traditional workplaces. People chose to homeschool their children.
Non-pharmaceutical interventions
Non-pharmaceutical interventions that may reduce spread include personal actions such as hand hygiene, wearing face masks, and self-quarantine; community measures aimed at reducing interpersonal contacts such as closing workplaces and schools and cancelling large gatherings; community engagement to encourage acceptance and participation in such interventions; as well as environmental measures such as surface cleaning. Many such measures were criticised as hygiene theatre
Other measures
More drastic actions, such as quarantining entire populations and strict travel bans have been attempted in various jurisdictions China and Australia’s lockdowns have been the most strict. New Zealand implemented the most severe travel restrictions. South Korea introduced mass screening and localised quarantines, and issued alerts on the movements of infected individuals. Singapore provided financial support, quarantined, and imposed large fines for those who broke quarantineContact tracing attempts to identify recent contacts of newly-infected individuals, and to screen them for infection The traditional approach is to request a list of contacts from infectees, and then telephone or visit the contacts.
Another approach is to collect location data from mobile devices to identify those who have come in significant contact with infectees, which prompted privacy concerns. On 10 April 2020, Google and Apple announced an initiative for privacy-preserving contact tracing In Europe and in the US, Palantir Technologies initially provided COVID-19 tracking servicesWHO described increasing capacity and adapting healthcare as a fundamental mitigation The ECDC and WHO’s European regional office issued guidelines for hospitals and primary healthcare services for shifting resources at multiple levels, including focusing laboratory services towards testing, cancelling elective procedures, separating and isolating patients, and increasing intensive care capabilities by training personnel and increasing ventilators and beds. The pandemic drove widespread adoption of telehealth
Improvised manufacturing
Due to capacity supply chains limitations, some manufacturers began 3D printing material such as nasal swabs and ventilator parts. In one example, an Italian startup received legal threats due to alleged patent infringement after reverse-engineering and printing one hundred requested ventilator valves overnight On 23 April 2020, NASA reported building, in 37 days, a ventilator which is undergoing further testing Individuals and groups of makers created and shared open source designs, and manufacturing devices using locally sourced materials, sewing, and 3D printing. Millions of face shields, protective gowns, and masks were made. Other ad hoc medical supplies included shoe covers, surgical caps, powered air-purifying respirators, and hand sanitizer. Novel devices were created such as ear savers, non-invasive ventilation helmets, and ventilator splitters
Herd immunity
In July 2021, several experts expressed concern that achieving herd immunity may not be possible because Delta can transmit among vaccinated individuals CDC published data showing that vaccinated people could transmit Delta, something officials believed was less likely with other variants. Consequently, WHO and CDC encouraged vaccinated people to continue with NPIs.

Interactive timeline map of confirmed cases per million people
(drag circle to adjust; may not work on mobile devices)
The outbreak was discovered in Wuhan in November 2019. It is possible that human-to-human transmission was happening before the discovery. Based on a retrospective analysis starting from December 2019, the number of cases in Hubei gradually increased, reaching 60 by 20 December and at least 266 by 31 December. A pneumonia cluster was observed on 26 December and treated by Doctor Zhang Jixian. He informed the Wuhan Jianghan CDC on 27 December Vision Medicals reported the discovery of a novel coronavirus to the China CDC (CCDC) on 28 December.
On 30 December, a test report from CapitalBioMedlab addressed to Wuhan Central Hospital reported an erroneous positive result for SARS, causing doctors there to alert authorities. Eight of those doctors, including Li Wenliang (who was also punished on 3 January were later admonished by the police for spreading false rumours; and Dr. Ai Fen was reprimanded.That evening, Wuhan Municipal Health Commission (WMHC) issued a notice about “the treatment of pneumonia of unknown cause” The next day, WMHC made the announcement public, confirming 27 cases—enough to trigger an investigation.On 31 December, the WHO office in China was informed of cases of the pneumonia cases and immediately launched an investigation.Official Chinese sources claimed that the early cases were mostly linked to the Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market, which also sold live animals However, in May 2020, CCDC director George Gao indicated the market was not the origin (animal samples had tested negativeOn 11 January, WHO was notified by the Chinese National Health Commission that the outbreak was associated with exposures in the market, and that China had identified a new type of coronavirus, which it isolated on 7 January.
Initially, the number of cases doubled approximately every seven and a half days In early and mid-January, the virus spread to other Chinese provinces, helped by the Chinese New Year migration. Wuhan was a transport hub and major rail interchange On 10 January, the virus’ genome was shared through GISAID A retrospective study published in March found that 6,174 people had reported symptoms by 20 January A 24 January report indicated human transmission, recommended personal protective equipment for health workers, and advocated testing, given the outbreak’s “pandemic potential On 31 January the first published modelling study warned of inevitable “independent self-sustaining outbreaks in major cities globally” and called for “large-scale public health interventionsOn 30 January, 7,818 infections had been confirmed, leading WHO to declare the outbreak a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC). On 11 March, WHO elevated it to a pandemic.By 31 January, Italy had its first confirmed infections, in two tourists from China On 19 March, Italy overtook China as the country with the most reported deaths. By 26 March, the United States had overtaken China and Italy as the country with the highest number of confirmed infections. Genomic analysis indicated that the majority of New York’s confirmed infections came from Europe, rather than directly from Asia. Testing of prior samples revealed a person who was infected in France on 27 December 2019 and a person in the United States who died from the disease on 6 FebruaryIn October, WHO reported that one in ten people around the world may have been infected, or 780 million people, while only 35 million infections had been confirmed. On 9 November, Pfizer released trial results for a candidate vaccine, showing that 90% effectiveness against severe infection That day, Novavax entered an FDA Fast Track application for their vaccine.
On 14 December, Public Health England reported that a variant had been discovered in the UK’s southeast, predominantly in Kent. The variant, later named Alpha, showed changes to the spike protein that could be more infectious. As of 13 December, 1,108 infections had been confirmedCanSino was the first vaccine to be approved, by China on 24 June. Other vaccines were approved later that year, including Sputnik V (Russia), BNT162b2 (US, UK, EU and others), Sinopharm (Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates) and mRNA-1273 (US).

On 2 January, the Alpha variant, first discovered in the UK, had been identified in 33 countries. On 6 January, the Gamma variant was first identified in Japanese travellers returning from BrazilOn 29 January, it was reported that the Novavax vaccine was 49% effective against the Beta variant in a clinical trial in South Africa. The CoronaVac vaccine was reported to be 50.4% effective in a Brazil clinical trialOn 12 March, several countries stopped using the Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine due to blood clotting problems, specifically cerebral venous sinus thrombosis (CVST) On 20 March, the WHO and European Medicines Agency found no link to thrombus, leading several countries to resume the vaccineIn March WHO reported that an animal host was the most likely origin, without ruling out other possibilitiesThe Delta variant was first identified in India. In mid-April, the variant was first detected in the UK and two months later it had metastasized into a third wave there, forcing the government to delay reopening that was originally scheduled for JuneOn November 10, Germany advised against the Moderna vaccine for people under 30.National reactions ranged from strict lockdowns to public education.WHO recommended that curfews and lockdowns should be short-term measures to reorganise, regroup, rebalance resources, and protect the health care systemAs of 26 March 2020, 1.7 billion people worldwide were under some form of lockdown This increased to 3.9 billion people by the first week of April—more than half the world’s population.As of the end of 2021, Asia’s peak had come at the same time and at the same level as the world as a whole, in May 2021.However, cumulatively they had experienced only half the world average China opted for containment, inflicting strict lockdowns to eliminate spread.As of 14 July 2020, 83,545 cases had been confirmed in China, along with 4,634 deaths and 78,509 recoveries In November 2020 some 1 million people had been vaccinated, according to China’s state council. The vaccines included the BIBP, WIBP, and CoronaVacMultiple sources cast doubt upon the accuracy of China’s official numbers, with some suggesting intentional data suppression.
It was reported on 11 December 2021 that China had vaccinated 1.162 billion of its citizens, or 82.5% of the total population of the country against Covid-19
Indian officials conducting temperature checks at the RathaYatra Hindu festival on 23 June 2020
The first case in India was reported on 30 January 2020. India ordered a nationwide lockdown starting 24 March 2020 with a phased unlock beginning 1 June 2020. Six cities accounted for around half of reported cases—Mumbai, Delhi, Ahmedabad, Chennai, Pune and Kolkata.A second wave hit India in April 2021, straining healthcare services.

Disinfection of Tehran Metro trains against COVID-19 transmission. Similar measures have also been taken in other countries
Iran reported its first confirmed cases on 19 February 2020 in Qom. Early measures included the cancellation of concerts and other cultural events Friday prayers and education shutdowns.[274]
Iran became a centre of the pandemic in February 2020 More than ten countries had traced their outbreaks to Iran by 28 February, indicating a more severe outbreak than the 388 reported cases. The Iranian Parliament closed, after 23 of its 290 members tested positive on 3 March 2020 At least twelve sitting or former Iranian politicians and government officials had died by 17 March 2020
By August 2021, the pandemic’s fifth wave peaked, with more than 400 deaths in 1 day
In Japan, the pandemic was believed to have damaged mental health. According to the report by the country’s National Police Agency, suicides increased to 2,153 in October 2020. Experts stated that the pandemic had worsened mental health issues due to lockdowns and isolation from family members, among other issues

A drive-through test centre at the Gyeongju Public Health Centre
COVID-19 was confirmed in South Korea on 20 January 2020. Military bases were quarantined after tests showed three infected soldiersSouth Korea introduced what was then considered the world’s largest and best-organised screening programme, isolating infected people, and tracing and quarantining contacts Screening methods included mandatory self-reporting by new international arrivals through mobile application,combined with drive-through testing,and increasing testing capability to 20,000 people/day Despite some early criticisms South Korea’s programme was considered a success in controlling the outbreak without quarantining entire cities.The global COVID-19 pandemic arrived in Europe with its first confirmed case in Bordeaux, France, on 24 January 2020, and subsequently spread widely across the continent. By 17 March 2020, every country in Europe had confirmed a case and all have reported at least one death, with the exception of Vatican City.
Italy was the first European nation to experience a major outbreak in early 2020, becoming the first country worldwide to introduce a national lockdown. By 13 March 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared Europe the epicentre of the pandemic and it remained so until the WHO announced it has been overtaken by South America on 22 May By 18 March 2020, more than 250 million people were in lockdown in Europe. Despite deployment of COVID-19 vaccines, Europe became the pandemic’s epicentre once again in late 2021.On 21 August, it was reported the COVID-19 cases were climbing among younger individuals across Europe. On 21 November, it was reported by the Voice of America that Europe is the worst hit area by COVID-19, with numbers exceeding 15 million casesOn 22 November, the WHO indicated that a new surge of the virus in Europe had caused Austria to implement another lockdown, while other countries in the region such as Germany are contemplating a lockdown, due to rising cases, as well. The earliest discovered infection came from an old sample sample collected on 27 December 2019 A superspreader event in the outbreak was the annual assembly of the Christian Open Door Church between 17 and 24 February. It was attended by about 2,500 people, at least half of whom were believed to have contracted the virus
On 13 March, Prime Minister Édouard Philippe ordered the closure of “non-essential” public places and on 16 March, President Emmanuel Macron announced mandatory home confinement.

Civil Protection volunteers conduct health checks at the Guglielmo Marconi Airport in Bologna on 5 February 2020.
The Italian outbreak began on 31 January 2020, when two Chinese tourists tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 in Rome.]Cases began to rise sharply, which prompted the government to suspend flights to and from China and declare a state of emergency. On 22 February 2020, the Council of Ministers announced a new decree-law to contain the outbreak, including quarantining more than 50,000 people in northern Italy. On 4 March the Italian government ordered schools and universities closed as Italy reached a hundred deaths. Sport was suspended completely for at least one month.On 11 March Conte stopped nearly all commercial activity except supermarkets and pharmacies

On 19 March Italy overtook China as the country with the most COVID-19-related deaths On 19 April the first wave ebbed, as 7-day deaths declined to 433 On 13 October, the Italian government again issued restrictive rules to contain the second wave.On 10 November Italy surpassed 1 million confirmed infections. On 23 November, it was reported that the second wave of the virus had led some hospitals to stop accepting patients


Residents of Valencia, Spain, maintaining social distancing while queueing (20 March 2020)
The virus was first confirmed to have spread to Spain on 31 January 2020, when a German tourist tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 in La Gomera, Canary Islands.[315] Post-hoc genetic analysis has shown that at least 15 strains of the virus had been imported, and community transmission began by mid-February
On 29 March, it was announced that, beginning the following day, all non-essential workers were ordered to remain at home for the next 14 days By late March, the Community of Madrid has recorded the most cases and deaths in the country. Medical professionals and those who live in retirement homes have experienced especially high infection rates On 25 March, the official death toll in Spain surpassed that of mainland China.On 2 April, 950 people died of the virus in a 24-hour period—at the time, the most by any country in a single day.[320] On 17 May, the daily death toll announced by the Spanish government fell below 100 for the first time,[321] and 1 June was the first day without deaths by COVID-19.The state of alarm ended on 21 June.However, the number of cases increased again in July in a number of cities including Barcelona, Zaragoza and Madrid, which led to reimposition of some restrictions but no national lockdownAs of September 2021, Spain is one of the countries with the highest percentage of its population vaccinated (76% fully vaccinated and 79% with the first dose), while also being one of the countries more in favor of vaccines against COVID-19 (nearly 94% of its population is already vaccinated or wants to be).]
Sweden differed from most other European countries in that it mostly remained open Per the Swedish Constitution, the Public Health Agency of Sweden has autonomy that prevents political interference and the agency favoured remaining open. The Swedish strategy focused on longer-term measures, based on the assumption that after lockdown the virus would resume spreading, with the same result. By the end of June, Sweden no longer had excess mortality
Devolution in the United Kingdom meant that each of its four countries developed its own response. England’s restrictions were shorter-lived than the others. The UK government started enforcing social distancing and quarantine measures on 18 March It was criticised for a perceived lack of intensity in its response. On 16 March, Prime Minister Boris Johnson advised against non-essential travel and social contact, praising work from home and avoiding venues such as pubs, restaurants, and theatres.On 20 March, the government ordered all leisure establishments to close and promised to prevent unemployment On 23 March, Johnson banned gatherings and restricted non-essential travel and outdoor activity. Unlike previous measures, these restrictions were enforceable by police through fines and dispersal of gatherings. Most non-essential businesses were ordered to closeOn 24 April, it was reported that a promising vaccine trial had begun in England; the government pledged more than £50 million towards researchOn 16 April, it was reported that the UK would have first access to the Oxford vaccine, due to a prior contract; should the trial be successful, some 30 million doses would be availableOn 2 December, the UK became the first developed country to approve the Pfizer vaccine; 800,000 doses were immediately available for use On 9 December, MHRA stated that any individual with a significant allergic reaction to a vaccine, such as an anaphylactoid reaction, should not take the Pfizer vaccine.
North America
Main article: COVID-19 pandemic in North America
The first cases of the COVID-19 pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 in North America were reported in the United States on 23 January 2020. Cases were reported in all North American countries after Saint Kitts and Nevis confirmed a case on 25 March, and in all North American territories after Bonaire confirmed a case on 16 April

Percentage of the population vaccinated with at least one dose as of November 6, 2021
The virus was confirmed to have reached Canada on January 27, 2020, after an individual who had returned to Toronto from Wuhan, Hubei, China, tested positive. The first case of community transmission in Canada was confirmed in British Columbia on March 5. In March 2020, as cases of community transmission were confirmed, all of Canada’s provinces and territories declared states of emergency. Provinces and territories have, to varying degrees, implemented school and daycare closures, prohibitions on gatherings, closures of non-essential businesses and restrictions on entry. Canada severely restricted its border access, barring travellers from all countries with some exceptions. The federal Minister of Health invoked the Quarantine Act, introduced following the 2002–2004 SARS outbreakNear the end of summer 2021, cases began to surge across Canada, notably in the provinces of British Columbia, Alberta, Quebec and Ontario, particularly amongst the unvaccinated population. During this fourth wave of the virus, return to pandemic restrictions such as mask mandates were reinstated in provinces like British Columbia and Alberta Due to the surge in cases largely being a “pandemic of the unvaccinated”, vaccine passports were adopted in all provinces and two of the territories
51,545,991confirmed cases have been reported in the United States with 812,069deaths, the most of any country, and the nineteenth-highest per capita worldwideAs many infections have gone undetected, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimated that, as of May 2021, there could be a total 120.2 million infections in the United States, or more than a third of the total population. COVID-19 is the deadliest pandemic in U.S. history;[ it was the third-leading cause of death in the U.S. in 2020, behind heart disease and cancer.From 2019 to 2020, U.S. life expectancy dropped by 3 years for Hispanic Americans, 2.9 years for African Americans, and 1.2 years for white AmericansThese effects have persisted as U.S. deaths due to COVID-19 in 2021 exceeded those in 2020.COVID-19 vaccines became available in December 2020, under emergency use, beginning the national vaccination program, with the first vaccine officially approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on August 23, 2021 Studies have shown them to be highly protective against severe illness, hospitalization, and death. In comparison with fully vaccinated people, the CDC found that those who were not vaccinated were from 5 to nearly 30 times more likely to become either infected or hospitalized. There has nonetheless been some vaccine hesitancy for various reasons, although side effects are rareThe COVID-19 pandemic was confirmed to have reached South America on 26 February 2020 when Brazil confirmed a case in São Paulo By 3 April, all countries and territories in South America had recorded at least one caseOn 13 May 2020, it was reported that Latin America and the Caribbean had reported over 400,000 cases of COVID-19 infection with, 23,091 deaths. On 22 May 2020, citing the rapid increase of infections in Brazil, the World Health Organization WHO declared South America the epicentre of the pandemic.
As of 16 July 2021, South America had recorded 34,359,631 confirmed cases and 1,047,229 deaths from COVID-19. Due to a shortage of testing and medical facilities, it is believed that the outbreak is far larger than the official numbers showPresident JairBolsonaro created controversy by referring to the virus as a “little flu” and frequently speaking out against preventive measures such as lockdowns and quarantines. His attitude towards the outbreak was likened to that of then US President Trump. Bolsonaro was called the “Trump of the Tropics Bolsonaro later tested positive for the virus.In June 2020, the government of Brazil attempted to conceal active case and death and death counts, ceasing to publish cumulative data.
The COVID-19 pandemic was confirmed to have spread to Africa on 14 February 2020, with the first confirmed case announced in Egypt. The first confirmed case in sub-Saharan Africa was announced in Nigeria at the end of February 2020 Within three months, the virus had spread throughout the continent, as Lesotho, the last African sovereign state to have remained free of the virus, reported a case on 13 May 2020 By 26 May, it appeared that most African countries were experiencing community transmission, although testing capacity was limited Most of the identified imported cases arrived from Europe and the United States rather than from China where the virus originated
In early June 2021, Africa faced a third wave of COVID infections with cases rising in 14 countries. By 4 July the continent recorded more than 251,000 new Covid cases, a 20% increase from the prior week and a 12% increase from the January peak. More than sixteen African countries, including Malawi and Senegal, recorded an uptick in new cases The World Health Organization labelled it Africa’s ‘Worst Pandemic Week Ever’The COVID-19 pandemic was confirmed to have reached Oceania on 25 January 2020 with the first confirmed case reported in Melbourne, Australia It has since spread elsewhere in the region, although many small Pacific island nations have thus far avoided the outbreak by closing their international borders. Two Oceania sovereign states (Nauru and Tuvalu) and one dependency (Cook Islands) have yet to report an active case. Australia and New Zealand were praised for their handling of the pandemic in comparison to other Western nations, with New Zealand and each state in Australia wiping out all community transmission of the virus several times even after re-introduction in the community
As a result of the high transmissibility of the Delta variant however, by August 2021, the Australian states of New South Wales and Victoria had conceded defeat in their eradication efforts In early October 2021, New Zealand also abandoned its elimination strategyDue to its remoteness and sparse population, Antarctica was the last continent to have confirmed cases of COVID-19 and was one of the last regions of the world affected directly by the pandemic The first cases were reported in December 2020, almost a year after the first cases of COVID-19 were detected in China. At least 36 people are confirmed to have been infected
The pandemic shook the world’s economy, with especially severe economic damage in the United States, Europe, and Latin America A consensus report by American intelligence agencies in April 2021 concluded, “Efforts to contain and manage the virus have reinforced nationalist trends globally, as some states turned inward to protect their citizens and sometimes cast blame on marginalized groups.” COVID-19 inflamed partisanship and polarisation around the world as bitter arguments exploded over how to respond. International trade was disrupted amid the formation of no-entry enclavesThe pandemic led many countries and regions to impose quarantines, entry bans, or other restrictions, either for citizens, recent travellers to affected areas,[ or for all travellers.Travel collapsed worldwide, damaging the travel sector. The effectiveness of travel restrictions was questioned as the virus spread across the world One study found that travel restrictions only modestly affected the initial spread, unless combined with other infection prevention and control measures.Researchers concluded that “travel restrictions are most useful in the early and late phase of an epidemic” and “restrictions of travel from Wuhan unfortunately came too late
The European Union rejected the idea of suspending the Schengen free travel zone

Ukraine evacuates Ukrainian and foreign citizens from Wuhan, China.
Several countries repatriated their citizens and diplomatic staff from Wuhan and surroundings, primarily through charter flights. Canada, the United States, Japan, India Sri Lanka, Australia, France, Argentina, Germany, and Thailand were among the first to do so Brazil and New Zealand evacuated their own nationals and others On 14 March, South Africa repatriated 112 South Africans who tested negative, while four who showed symptoms were left behind Pakistan declined to evacuate its citizensOn 15 February, the US announced it would evacuate Americans aboard the Diamond Princess cruise ship and on 21 February, Canada evacuated 129 Canadians from the ship[ In early March, the Indian government began repatriating its citizens from Iran. On 20 March, the United States began to withdraw some troops from Iraq.
United Nationsain
In June 2020, the Secretary-General of the United Nations launched the UN Comprehensive Response to COVID-19.The United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNSC) was criticised for its slow response, especially regarding the UN’s global ceasefire, which aimed to open up humanitarian access to conflict zones.
The WHO spearheaded initiatives such as the COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund to raise money for the pandemic response, the UN COVID-19 Supply Chain Task Force, and the solidarity trial for investigating potential treatment options for the disease. The COVAX program, co-led by the WHO, Gavi, and the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI), aimed to accelerate the development, manufacture, and distribution of COVID-19 vaccines, and to guarantee fair and equitable access across the world

.efforts and courage are not enough without purpose and direction. Our efforts should eradicated virus otherwise we are undone.
The pandemic and responses to it damaged the global economy. On 27 February, worries about the outbreak crushed US stock indexes, which posted their sharpest falls since 2008Lloyd’s of London estimated that the global insurance industry would face losses of US$204 billion, exceeding the losses from the 2017 Atlantic hurricane season and 11 September attacks, suggesting that the pandemic would become the costliest disaster in human history
Tourism collapsed due to travel restrictions, closing of public places including travel attractions, and advice of governments against travel. Airlines cancelled flights, while British regional airline Flybe collapsed The cruise line industry was hard hit and train stations and ferry ports closed.[ International mail stopped or was delayed.

A socially distanced homeless encampment in San Francisco, California, in May 2020
The retail sector faced reductions in store hours or temporary closures.[427] Retailers in Europe and Latin America faced traffic declines of 40 per cent. North America and Middle East retailers saw a 50–60 per cent drop Shopping centres faced a 33–43 per cent drop in foot traffic in March compared to February. Mall operators around the world coped by increasing sanitation, installing thermal scanners to check the temperature of shoppers, and cancelling eventsHundreds of millions of jobs were lost globally. including more than 40 million Americans According to a report by Yelp, about 60% of US businesses that closed will stay shut permanently. According to a United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America estimate, the pandemic-induced recession could leave 14–22 million more people in extreme poverty in Latin America According to the World Bank, up to 100 million more people globally could fall into extreme poverty due to the shutdowns The International Labour Organization (ILO) reported that the income generated in the first nine months of 2020 from work across the world dropped by 10.7 per cent, or $3.5 trillion.
Supply shortages
The outbreak has been blamed for supply shortages from panic buying (emptying groceries of essentials such as food, toilet paper, and bottled water), and disruption to factory and logistic operations. Shortages were worsened by supply chain disruptions from factory and port shutdowns, and labor shortages.
Panic buying stemmed from perceived threat, perceived scarcity, fear of the unknown, coping behaviour and social psychological factors (e.g. social influence and trust).Shortages continued as managers underestimated the speed of economic recovery after the initial economic crash. The technology industry, in particular, warned of delays from underestimates of semiconductor demand for vehicles and other productsAccording to WHO’s Adhanom, demand for personal protection equipment (PPE) rose one hundredfold, pushing prices up twentyfold PPE stocks were exhausted everywhere.The pandemic disrupted global food supplies. In April 2020, World Food Programme head David Beasley said “we could be facing multiple famines of biblical proportions within a short few monthsBy contrast, petroleum products were in surplus at the beginning of the pandemic, as demand for gasoline and other products collapsed due to reduced commuting and other trips The 2021 global energy crisis was driven by a global surge in demand as the world economy recovered. Energy demand was particularly strong in Asia

An American Catholic military chaplain prepares for a live-streamed Mass in an empty chapel at Offutt Air Force Base in March 2020.
The performing arts and cultural heritage sectors have been profoundly affected by the pandemic, impacting organisations’ operations as well as individuals—both employed and independent—globally. By March 2020, across the world and to varying degrees, museums, libraries, performance venues, and other cultural institutions had been indefinitely closed with their exhibitions, events and performances cancelled or postponed Some services continued through digital platforms, such as live streaming concerts or web-based arts festivals

An Italian government task force meets to discuss COVID-19 in February 2020.
The pandemic affected multiple countries’ political systems, causing suspensions of legislative activities,[457] isolations or deaths of politicians and rescheduled elections
Although they developed broad support among epidemiologists, NPIs (non-pharmaceutical interventions) were controversial in many countries. Intellectual opposition came primarily from other fields, along with a few heterodox epidemiologists
On 23 March 2020, United Nations Secretary-General António Manuel de Oliveira Guterres appealed for a global ceasefire;172 UN Member States and Observers signed a non-binding supporting statement in June and the UN Security Council passed a resolution supporting it in July.

The government of China was criticised by multiple countries for its handling of the pandemic. Multiple provincial-level administrators of the Communist Party of China were dismissed over their handling of quarantine measures. Some commentators claimed this move was intended to protect CCP general secretary Xi Jinping.The US intelligence community claimed that China intentionally under-reported its number of COVID-19 cases.The Chinese government maintained that it acted swiftly and transparently. Journalists and activists in China who reported on the pandemic were detained by authorities, including Zhang Zhan, who was arrested and tortured for reporting on the pandemic and the detainment of other independent journalists.
In early March, the Italian government criticised the EU’s lack of solidarity with COVID-19-affected ItalyOn 22 March, after a phone call with Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte, Russian president Vladimir Putin ordered the Russian army to send military medics, disinfection vehicles, and other medical equipment to Italy In early April, Norway and EU states like Romania and Austria started to offer help by sending medical personnel and disinfectant and Ursula von der Leyen offered an official apology to the country
United States

Several hundred anti-lockdown protesters rallied at the Ohio Statehouse on 20 April 2020.
The outbreak prompted calls for the United States to adopt social policies common in other wealthy countries, including universal health care, universal child care, paid sick leave, and higher levels of funding for public health Some political analysts claimed that it contributed to Trump’s loss in the 2020 presidential election Beginning in mid-April 2020, in several US states protests objected to government-imposed business closures and restricted personal movement and association Simultaneously, protests ensued by essential workers in the form of a general strike In early October 2020, Trump, his family members, and many other government officials were diagnosed with COVID-19Russia sent a cargo plane with medical aid to the United States. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said “when offering assistance to US colleagues, [Putin] assumes that when US manufacturers of medical equipment and materials gain momentum, they will also be able to reciprocate if necessary
Other countries
Rates of imprisoned or detained journalists increased worldwide, with some being related to the pandemic
The planned NATO “Defender 2020” military exercise in Germany, Poland, and the Baltic states, the largest NATO war exercise since the end of the Cold War, was held on a reduced scale.The Iranian government was heavily affected by the virus, which infected some two dozen parliament members and political figures Iran President Hassan Rouhani wrote a public letter to world leaders asking for help on 14 March 2020, due to a lack of access to international markets.Saudi Arabia, which launched a military intervention in Yemen in March 2015, declared a ceasefireDiplomatic relations between Japan and South Korea worsened.] South Korea criticised Japan’s “ambiguous and passive quarantine efforts” after Japan announced anyone coming from South Korea must quarantine for two weeks. South Korean society was initially polarised on President Moon’s response to the crisis; many Koreans signed petitions calling for Moon’s impeachment or praising his response.Some countries passed emergency legislation. Some commentators expressed concern that it could allow governments to strengthen their grip on power In the Philippines, lawmakers granted president Rodrigo Duterte temporary emergency powers.In Hungary, the parliament voted to allow prime minister ViktorOrbán to rule by decree indefinitely, suspend parliament and elections, and punish those deemed to have spread false information about the government’s handling of the crisis. In countries such as Egypt Turkey,and Thailand, opposition activists and government critics were arrested for allegedly spreading fake news.In India, journalists criticising the government’s response were arrested or issued warnings by police and authorities
Food systems
The COVID-19 pandemic disrupted food systems worldwide COVID-19 hit at a time when hunger or undernourishment was rising, with an estimated 690 million people lacking food security in 2019 The UN estimated at the time that the pandemic would endanger 83–132 million others in 2020.This is mainly due to a lack of food access – driven by falling incomes, lost remittances and, in some cases, a rise in food prices. These issues were complicated by pandemic-caused disruptions to food production.The pandemic and its accompanying lockdowns and travel restrictions prevented movement of food aid. Famines were forecast, which the UN called a crisis “of biblical proportions or “hunger pandemic It was estimated that without intervention 30 million people may die of hunger, with Oxfam reporting that “12,000 people per day could die from COVID-19 linked hunger” by the end of 2020. This pandemic, in conjunction with the 2019–2021 locust infestations and several ongoing armed conflicts, is predicted to form the worst series of famines since the Great Chinese Famine, affecting between 10 and 20 per cent of the global population in some way 55 countries are reported to be at risk.[523] Per the World Health Organization 811 million individuals were undernourished in 2020, “likely related to the fallout of COVID-19
The pandemic impacted educational systems in many countries. Many governments temporarily closed educational institutions, often replaced by online education. Other countries, such as Sweden, kept their schools open. As of September 2020, approximately 1.077 billion learners were affected due to school closures. School closures impacted students, teachers, and families with far-reaching economic and societal consequences. They shed light on social and economic issues, including student debt, digital learning, food insecurity, and homelessness, as well as access to childcare, health care, housing, internet, and disability services. The impact has been more severe for disadvantaged children and their families.The Higher Education Policy Institute conducted a report which discovered that around 63% of students claimed that their mental health had been worsened as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, and alongside this 38% demonstrated satisfaction with the accessibility of mental health services. Despite this, the director for policy and advocacy at the institute has explained that it is still unclear as to how and when normality will resume for students regarding their education and living situation

The pandemic impacted global health in ways far beyond the disease itself. It reduced hospital visits for other conditions. In the US, hospital visits for heart attack symptoms declined by 38%, compared to 40% in Spain The head of cardiology at the University of Arizona said, “My worry is some of these people are dying at home because they’re too scared to go to the hospital People with strokes and appendicitis were less likely to seek treatment Medical supply shortages impacted many peopleThe pandemic impacted mental health increasing anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder, affecting healthcare workers, patients and quarantined individuals

Images from the NASA Earth Observatory show a stark drop in pollution in Wuhan, when comparing NO2 levels in early 2019 (top) and early 2020 (bottom
The pandemic and the reaction to it positively affected the environment and climate as a result of reduced human activity. During the “anthropause”, fossil fuel use decreased, resource consumption declined, and waste disposal was improved, generating less air and water pollution. Specifically, planned air travel and vehicle transportation declined throughout the pandemic. In China, lockdowns and other measures resulted in a 26% decrease in coal consumption, and a 50% reduction in nitrogen oxides emissions Earth systems scientist Marshall Burke estimated that two months of pollution reduction likely saved the lives of 77,000 Chinese residents.
Discrimination and prejudice
Heightened prejudice, xenophobia, and racism have been documented around the world toward people of Chinese and East Asian descent Reports from February 2020 (when most confirmed cases were confined to China) documented racist sentiments expressed worldwide about Chinese people ‘deserving’ the virus Chinese people and other Asian peoples in the United Kingdom and United States reported increasing levels of racist abuse and assaults Former US President Donald Trump was criticised for referring to the COVID-19 as the “Chinese Virus” and “Kung Flu”, which others condemned as racist and xenophobic.Age-based discrimination against older adults, while present before the pandemic, increased. This has been attributed to their perceived vulnerability to the virus and subsequent physical and social isolation measures, which, coupled with their reduced social activity, increased dependency on others. Similarly, limited digital literacy left the elderly more vulnerable to the effects of isolation, depression, and loneliness.
Lifestyle changes
The pandemic triggered massive changes in behavior, from increased internet commerce to the job market. Online retailers in the US posted 791.70 billion dollars in sales in 2020, an increase of 32.4% from 598.02 billion dollars from the year before Home delivery orders increased, while indoor restaurant dining shut down due to lockdown orders or low sales.Hackers and cybercriminals/scammers took advantage of the changes to launch new attacks.Education in some countries temporarily shifted from physical attendance to video conferencing.]Massive layoffs shrank the airline, travel, hospitality, and other industries.
Information dissemination
Research is indexed and searchable in the NIH COVID-19 Portfolio. Some newspaper agencies removed their online paywalls for some or all of their COVID-19-related articles and posts Some scientific publishers made pandemic-related papers available with open access.The share of papers published on preprint servers prior to peer review increased dramatically.Maps played a key role in communicating the spatial distribution of the pandemic. Multiple institutions developed dashboards to present data in near real-time.


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