The first person to officially die from the novel coronavirus was a 61-year-old Chinese man from Wuhan on January 9. Now, three months later, by April 10, more than 100,000 people have succumbed to the disease.
First Asia, then Europe in March and now the United States have each, in turn, become the epicenter of the COVID-19 pandemic, which has forced more than half of humanity into lockdown.
Despite sometimes Draconian confinement measures, the number of daily deaths has accelerated across the globe — from fewer than 500 per day in mid-March, to more than 5,000 at the start of April and now nearly 7,500.
In the last eight days, more deaths were registered than in the preceding 84 days.
In all, at least 100,859 people have died from coronavirus, according to an AFP tally at 1900 GMT on Friday, using official figures. More than 1.6 million declared cases have been registered in 193 countries, of which at least 335,900 are considered recovered.
The tallies, using data collected by AFP from national authorities and information from the World Health Organization (WHO), probably reflect only a fraction of the actual number of infections.
Many countries are only testing the most serious cases. Others do not have a policy of large-scale testing when resources are severely lacking, as in Africa.
“There are problems with all the indicators, but the number of cases depends a lot on the number of tests,” said French epidemiologist Catherine Hill.
“The number of dead is a good indicator provided that you do not change the parameter along the way.”
In France, for example, deaths in nursing homes were not counted until April 2 and the daily number of deaths in these establishments prior to that date would have to be reconstructed.
Some countries, such as Spain, have also questioned whether their tolls might be higher, as people dying at home are generally not taken into account.