THE number of global cases of coronavirus has now hit TWO MILLION, with Europe becomes the worst affected continent.
Germany suffered its deadliest day with a death toll of 285 in 24 hours – nearly a 10 percent increase from last week.
The spike in deaths comes despite a slowing infection rate which has prompted some experts to call for the re-opening of schools “as soon as possible.”
Experts warn the time lag between infection and death means a country’s death figures may continue to worsen even once the number of cases slows down.
The number of deaths has increased by 9.6 percent since last Friday – seeing the total number of fatalities in Germany hit 3,254.
However, the number of new infections today is 2,486 – higher than yesterday’s 2,082 but still the second-lowest figure since March 22.
According to a tally by AFP, with at least 1,003,284 cases, including 84,465 deaths, Europe is the worst hit continent.
Globally, 2,000,984 COVID-19 infections and 128,071 deaths have been registered.
This comes as children up to the age of 11 are returning to nurseries and schools across Denmark, as the government becomes the first in Europe to relax restrictions.
Denmark was also one of the first countries to impose lockdown in Europe – with schools closing on March 12.
Not all parents are happy about the children’s return to school, with one mum saying how she refuses to let her child be used as a “guinea pig” for Covid-19.
Judit, whose daughter has type-1 diabetes told The Independent: “I’m worriedthat children are being used as an experiment and, if I’m honest, I am not convinced by the letter we received from the school listing the additional safety measures they’re implementing. ”
A number of Facebook groups have been set up by concerned parents – with one going by the name “my child will not be a Guinea pig for Covid-19”, which already has over 39,000 members.
Lessons will be held outside with one headteacher asking for a donation of large camping tents to be used as temporary classrooms.
More than 6,500 people have been infected in Denmark, with 299 fatalities.
On Wednesday, Spanish workers returned to their jobs to ease the strain on the economy – despite the death toll standing at 17,209 that day.
Italy is also easing its lockdown – Europe’s longest – with shops selling books, stationery and children’s clothes to re-open on Tuesday.
Professor Lawrence Gostin, director of the World Health Organisation’s Center on Public Health and Human Rights, said outbreaks in the developing world could mean the virus will return even after the current epidemic is under control.
Europe and the US could see up to three more waves of Covid-19 once the bug grips Africa.
Covid-19 has swept across Asia, Europe, and North America in recent months, but is yet to infect significant numbers of people in Africa or the subcontinent.
Fears have been raised about the likely ability of governments and health system in lower-income countries to contain or combat the coming outbreak.
Speaking on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, Professor Gostin said: “Covid-19 is about to march through sub-Saharan Africa and perhaps the Indian subcontinent like an avalanche.