The COVID-19 pandemic is “accelerating” and a record number of new cases in a single day were reported to the World Health Organization (WHO) on Thursday, WHO director-general Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesu said during a news conference on Friday. The WHO said there were more than 150,000 new cases of the coronavirus on Thursday, and about half of those cases came from the Americas. There have been more than 8.5 million cases in total, with nearly half a million deaths, since the virus first gained international attention in January. The U.S. has the most number of cases worldwide, with about 2.2 million cases and at least 118,000 deaths. Elsewhere in the Americas, Chile and Peru have both reported more than 230,000 cases at this time. “The world is in a new and dangerous phase,” Tedros said. “We call on all countries and all people to exercise extreme vigilance.”


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