The World Health Organization (WHO) on Wednesday, March 11, declared the novel coronavirus outbreak, which has spread to at least 114 countries around the world, a pandemic.
"WHO has been assessing this outbreak around the clock and we are deeply concerned both by the alarming levels of spread and severity and by the alarming levels of inaction," WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said while addressing a media gathering in Geneva said.
"We have therefore made the assessment that #COVID19 can be characterized as a pandemic," he added.
According to the WHO, a pandemic is the worldwide spread of a new disease.
"An epidemic that has spread over several countries or continents, usually affecting a large number of people," is how the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention defines a pandemic.
"We have called every day for countries to take urgent and aggressive action," WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said on Wednesday. "We have rung the alarm bell loud and clear," he added.
India's total number of coronavirus cases rose to 67 after two cases were reported in Mumbai, reported NDTV. With 8 cases reported in Pune, Maharashtra now has a total of 10 cases.
CM Uddhav Balasaheb Thackeray addressed a press conference today to update on COVID-19(Corona Virus):— Office of Uddhav Thackeray (@OfficeofUT) March 11, 2020
2 patients in Mumbai & 8 in Pune have been detected positive for COVID-19(Corona Virus). They've been kept in the hospital under observation. pic.twitter.com/qHQhkhhxt0
In the wake of the sudden spike in the number of cases in the country, the government has suspended all visas to India. Schools and colleges have also been shut in various parts of the country.
Globally, there are over 123,800 confirmed cases of COVID-19, and over 4,600 have died. In China, over 3,160 people have died from the virus, and there are over 80,700 confirmed cases.
Outside China, Italy and Iran are the worst affected with over 12,400 infections in Italy and over 9,000 in Iran. While Italy has reported at least 827 deaths, Iran has reported at least 354. To tighten the quarantine measures, Italy has ordered the closure of all but essential services and shops for two weeks. Meanwhile, South Korea has over 7,800 infections and at least 66 deaths.Also Read: Coronavirus Outbreak: Test Yourself At Nearest Government Hospital If You Have These Symptoms