It has now been a year since the origin and spread of the coronavirus pandemic around the world. The deadly virus, which was first detected in China’s Wuhan, has affected almost every country in the world, infecting and killing millions everywhere. At the end of 2020, people have pinned their hopes on vaccines against the coronavirus disease (Covid-19) as they look forward to returning to normalcy.
Here is how several countries saw the pandemic ravage :
1. United States: America has been the worst-affected country by Covid-19 and its tally will soon touch the grim mark of 20 million cases. The country has been hit by a multitude of waves of the virus. By mid-December five in every 100 Americans have been infected by the virus, as reported by AP.
2. India: While the second-worst hit country has been showing a declining trend in reporting active cases of the coronavirus disease, it didn’t have a great start. India responded to the disease by declaring an early abrupt strictest nationwide lockdown of 21 days, followed by a series of lockdowns. India’s attempt to control the spread of the virus came at the cost of its economy, and the tragic migrant labour crisis due to the unplanned nature of the restrictions.
3. Brazil: This nation with Covid-19 cases of more than 7 million saw the virus being introduced by the national leader as a ‘little flu’, as reported AP. President Jair Bolsonaro scoffed at the virus and instead encouraged the people to flout all Covid-safety protocols while refusing to take the responsibility of the rising toll, according to AP.
4. Italy: The eighth-worst affected nation showed the world how dangerous the virus is as the healthcare system of the developed country started collapsing. According to AP, it became the epicentre of Covid-19 in February 2020, lessons from the first wave also didn’t help to cause many more deaths in September despite plans and protocols in place.
5. Spain: The ninth-worst hit country saw numerous healthcare workers succumbing to the deadly virus. While public healthcare officials boast about the system even with 929 deaths in a single day, it was the overworked staff that managed to slow down the virus spread, as per AP.
6. Germany: This European country enjoyed a relaxed summer due to ease of many restrictions, which was the result of early measures to control the spread. But as relaxations set in, the numbers started to rise, with the country’s chancellor warning people that it would be a difficult winter as the country went back in a lockdown, reported AP.
7. Iran: Iran too has been a sceptic about the coronavirus but the situation of the country has been worsening till date with the virus infecting and killing the top officials. The virus has become the greatest threat for the country after turmoil and war that followed its 1979 Islamic Revolution, reported AP.
8. South Africa: The virus hit the poor hardest in the country with unemployment rising up to 42%, AP reported. But the secret weapon of the country were the veteran health officials with the experience of longstanding battles with HIV/AIDS and TB, who were looked upon for another crisis, reported AP.
9. Japan: This country saw the virus hit its shores in February when the luxury cruise ship Diamond Princess became the hotspot with an explosion of infections, reported AP. Japan credits the use of masks and border control measures for the disease mitigation and hopes to host the Olympic games next year.
10. China: China, where the virus was first reported, is almost back to normal. AP reported, workers have returned to factories and offices, students are back in the classroom and people are back eating out in crowded restaurants with great economic projections for the upcoming decade.