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COVID-19 cases worldwide exceed 5.3 million, WHO says S. America is new epicenter Updated: 2020-05-23 12:33:01 KST

As of Saturday, the total number of COVID-19 cases around the world has exceeded the 5.3 million mark.
According to international statistics site, World-Ometer, the deadly virus has killed more than 340-thousand people and impacted over 200 countries.
The U.S. has more coronavirus cases than any other country, with over 1.6 million infections.
Overtaking Russia for second place in the world is Brazil, which saw almost 20-thousand cases in two days, bringing the total to 332-thousand. A hike in numbers has also been seen in Peru, Chile and Mexico.
Regarding the recent phenomena, the World Health Organization says South America has now become a new epicenter of the global pandemic, about six months after the virus emerged on the other side of the world in Wuhan, China. Over 650-thousand cases have been confirmed in some 30 South American countries,with the region accounting for 12 percent of the total COVID-19 cases worldwide.

At a briefing on Friday, the WHO also pointed out that the government of Brazil has approved the broader use of anti-malaria drug hydroxychloroquine.

"Our current and clinical and systematic reviews carried out by Pan American Health Organization on the current clinical evidence does not support the use of hydroxychloroquine for the treatment of COVID-19 not until the trials are completed, and we have clear results."

Ryan added that concerns are growing over infections in Africa where there's a lack of medical systems and testing facilities. The number of confirmed patients in Africa increased 50 percent last week. The comparatively low death rate is due to the fact that half of the population is under 18.
Choi Jeong-yoon, Arirang News.

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