COVID cases fell again last week worldwide: WHO

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The World Health Organization (WHO) said in a weekly report that the number of new COVID-19 cases around the world fell by almost a quarter last week.

The agency said nearly 5.59 million cases were reported between April 11 and April 17, which is 24% less than the previous week.

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In addition, the number of recently reported deaths fell by 21% to 18,215.

While new cases fell in each region, America experienced only a 2% drop.

Visitors take pictures of the giant panda in Ocean Park, Thursday, April 21, 2022. Hong Kong Ocean Park was reopened to the public after shutting down due to an increase in COVID-19 infections.

Visitors take pictures of the giant panda in Ocean Park, Thursday, April 21, 2022. Hong Kong Ocean Park was reopened to the public after shutting down due to an increase in COVID-19 infections.
(AP Photo / Kin Cheung)

The countries with the highest reported case numbers last week were South Korea, France and Germany.

The highest number of new deaths was reported by the United States, Russia and South Korea.

According to data from the Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center, the United States reported 68,781 new cases and 877 new deaths within the past 24 hours.

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The WHO said that “these trends should be interpreted with caution as more countries are gradually changing their COVID-19 testing strategies, resulting in a lower overall number of tests performed and consequently a lower number of detected cases.”

More than 502 million cases of COVID-19 and nearly 6.2 million deaths related to coronavirus have been reported so far, although the total number is thought to be much higher.

Visitors wearing face masks to help curb the spread of coronavirus take a photo under lanterns ahead of the Buddha's upcoming birthday on May 8 at the Jogye Temple in Seoul, South Korea, on Thursday, April 21, 2022.

Visitors wearing face masks to help curb the spread of coronavirus take a photo under lanterns ahead of the Buddha’s upcoming birthday on May 8 at the Jogye Temple in Seoul, South Korea, on Thursday, April 21, 2022.
(AP Photo / Lee Jin-man)

While cases have dropped markedly since the winter’s omicron rise, experts have warned of the circulation of highly transferable sub-variants.

Still, restrictions have been eased around the world, with Hong Kong reopening Disneyland and museums, and Shanghai has eased its strict lockdown a bit.

South Korean officials recently announced that they intend to remove most pandemic rules, including limits on indoor assembly.

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People who are allowed to eat in cinemas, religious facilities, bus terminals and train stations from 25 April.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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