On Sunday, June 7, Indian health authorities reported the highest daily increase in coronavirus disease (COVID-19) cases to date, recording 287 deaths and 9971 new cases in the previous 24 hours. As of Monday, June 8, the country's total stands at 260,093 confirmed cases, with 7263 associated fatalities, with New Delhi, Mumbai, and Ahmedabad being the worst affected cities. While the number of positive COVID-19 cases in India has been increasing, the World Health Organization (WHO) has stated that the disease was not growing exponentially and that the number of cases per-capita was still "modest".
The increase in cases comes as India eases restrictions that had been in place to limit the spread of COVID-19. On May 30, Indian authorities announced the shortening of the nationwide curfew to 21:00 to 05:00 (local time) and have permitted intra-state and inter-state travel with no restrictions. Further restrictions were eased on June 8, with places of worship, hotels, restaurants, hospitality services, and malls reopening as part of the first phase of lockdown easing. A second phase is expected in July when educational establishments will reopen. The timing of the third and last phase is yet to be decided but will see international flights, metro services, gyms, sports facilities, and cinemas resume operations. The aforementioned measures have not been enacted in designated containment zones, which will see their lockdown extended until June 30. Containment zones are to be designated by state authorities and will include the immediate area around communities where a positive COVID-19 case has been identified.
Further international spread of the virus is to be expected over the near term.
The first case of COVID-19 was reported on December 31 and the source of the outbreak has been linked to a wet market in Wuhan (Hubei province, China). Human-to-human and patient-to-medical staff transmission of the virus have been confirmed. Many of the associated fatalities have been due to pneumonia caused by the virus.
Cases of the virus have been confirmed in numerous countries and territories worldwide. Virus-screening and quarantine measures are being implemented at airports worldwide, as well as extensive travel restrictions. On March 11, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the global outbreak a pandemic.
Pneumonia symptoms include dry cough, chest pain, fever, and trouble breathing. Pneumonia can be contagious and can be transmitted from human to human. The influenza virus, or the flu, is a common cause of viral pneumonia.
Measures adopted by local authorities evolve quickly and are usually effective immediately. Depending on the evolution of the outbreak in other countries, authorities are likely to modify, at very short notice, the list of countries whose travelers are subject to border control measures or entry restrictions upon their arrival to the territory in question. It is advised to postpone nonessential travel due to the risk that travelers may be refused entry or be subject to quarantine upon their arrival or during their stay.
To reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission, travelers are advised to abide by the following measures:
- Frequently clean hands by applying an alcohol-based hand rub or washing with soap and water.
- When coughing and sneezing, cover mouth and nose with a flexed elbow or tissue; if used, throw the tissue away immediately and wash hands.
- If experiencing a fever, cough, difficulty breathing, or any other symptoms suggestive of respiratory illness, including pneumonia, call emergency services before going to the doctor or hospital to prevent the potential spread of the disease.
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