Nations Falter, Case Counts Soar

Crowded beaches, rushed re-openings, and defiance of mask mandates are pushing governments around the world to tighten restrictions as COVID-19 case numbers push relentlessly higher, the AP reports.

The WHO reported 259,848 new infections Saturday—a record single day tally.

Highlights:

  • India passed 1 million infections, reporting a 24-hour record of 38,902 new cases.

  • Surging cases in Hong Kong and Australia spurred strict mask mandates for public places; in Australia, those refusing to wear a mask will be fined AU$200.

  • In the US, soaring infections in sunbelt states continue to strain hospitals, while some officials concede they reopened too soon. 


With piece headlined “We blew it,” Axios is not mincing words about the US failures on testing, schools, economics, public health, goodwill. 

“It didn't have to be this way,” the article concludes.

The disastrous US response was presaged by Europe’s experience, the New York Times reports in a must-read account.

In February, European health ministers expressed confidence in their ability to handle the virus, extolling their health systems and promising aid to support poor countries. But within a month, many countries were overwhelmed. A decade of budget cuts had undermined their health systems, and “their pandemic plans were built on a litany of miscalculations and false assumptions.”

The Quote: “They keep on telling countries what they should do, very clearly. But all these experts, when it happens in your own countries? There’s nothing. One lesson to learn is humility,” says Emmanuel André, a key coronavirus advisor for Belgium.

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