New Covid cases globally down by nearly a quarter last week

The World Health Organization (WHO) has said the number of reported new Covid-19 cases worldwide decreased by nearly a quarter last week, continuing a decline seen since the end of March.

The agency said nearly 5.59m cases were reported between 11 and 17 April, 24% fewer than in the previous week. The number of newly reported deaths dropped 21% to 18,215.

The WHO said cases declined in every region, though only by 2% in the Americas.

It said: “These trends should be interpreted with caution as several countries are progressively changing their Covid-19 testing strategies, resulting in lower overall numbers of tests performed and consequently lower numbers of cases detected.”

The countries with the highest reported case numbers last week were South Korea (more than 972,000), France (more than 827,000) and Germany (more than 769,000). The highest numbers of new deaths were reported by the US (3,076), Russia (1,784) and South Korea (1,671).

In all, more than 502m cases and nearly 6.2m deaths related to the coronavirus have been reported so far.

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