Updated: Sep 26, 2020
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the coronavirus cases are surging once again at an alarming rate in Europe. This is after a “Pandemic fatigue” which we are seeing more new cases every day than they did when the virus was at its peak in spring
According to Dr. Hans Kluge, WHO’s regional director for Europe, “We have a very serious situation unfolding before us.”
"Weekly cases have now exceeded those reported when the pandemic first peaked in Europe in March," Kluge said, "Last week, the region's weekly tally exceeded 300,000 patients."
“There are some worrying trends that we’re starting to see,” Dr. Maria Van Kerkhove, head of the World Health Organization’s emerging diseases and zoonosis unit, “What is really worrying I think for us is that we’re not only seeing an increase in the case numbers, but we’re seeing an increase in the hospitalizations. We’re seeing increases in ICUs.”
Intensive care units in some parts of France are experiencing near capacity which is troubling and according to Dr. Maria Van Kerkhove, “...these increasing numbers of hospitalization and ICU are really going to overburden an already burdened system.”
Governments have placed coronavirus restrictions all across Europe and are preparing themselves for a supposed second surge. According to CNN, in England, they are restricting people from meeting in social groups of more than six, this includes people of all ages and whether the event is indoors or outdoors.
According to UK Health Secretary Matt Hancock, stricter measures will come into play soon for the northeast of England, as the Covid-19 infections are rising at an alarming rate. Hancock is stressing the need to take immediate action against the virus, especially since winter is coming.
The measures to look out for would be a ban on socializing outside of households and a mandated closing time of 10 p.m. for all bars, pubs, restaurants, and leisure centers. They will apply to the cities of Newcastle, Sunderland, and Durham and will affect more than 1.5 million people.
After recent failures with the UK’s coronavirus testing, some people, including health workers, were finding it especially difficult to access tests, as they were being sent to testing sights quite far from their home.
The government is experiencing a lot of pressure over this incident leading to Prime Minister Boris Johnson defending Britain's coronavirus testing record on Wednesday. He said it compared to other European countries and that recent problems were due to a "colossal spike" in demand, with the surging cases.
There was an increase in cases in older age groups, those aged 50 to 79, in the first week of September, Kluge said, however, the biggest proportion of new cases is still among 25- to 49-year-olds (Source: CNN). This serves as a warning that everyone, no matter their age, should be making responsible decisions regarding their health in this pandemic.
Let this serve as a lesson to other countries, including America, that they shouldn’t be letting their guard down because that will lead to the virus finding even more opportunities to spread. According to epidemiologists from the U.S, France, Spain, etc. instead of the countries competing to lower their cases, we should learn from each other and come up with a way to fight this terrible virus. We certainly do not want a reenactment of earlier this year.