Coronavirus: Which countries are past the peak and which are yet to even flatten the curve?

Italy and Spain are slowly emerging from strict coronavirus lockdowns this week, allowing millions of people to return to work after nearly two months of confinement.

Both countries have seen a consistent drop in daily new cases, which is one of the key measures of whether a country is past the peak of its coronavirus outbreak.

Leaders in the UK and US are also plotting their lockdown exit strategies, but current trends suggest they are a long way behind the likes of Italy and Spain.

Health experts warn that lifting Covid-19 containment measures too early could result in a new wave of infections.

Here’s how some of the hardest hit countries compare when it comes to containing the spread of the deadly virus.

A similar pattern can be seen in the US, which has also seen a slowdown in new confirmed cases but not yet a consistent reduction.

Countries that do appear to be past the peak include those that introduced the most severe containment measures.

Italy has recorded its lowest number of new coronavirus cases since the start of March, as it slowly emerges from lockdown.

New cases in France have also been falling since the beginning of April after strict lockdown rules were introduced.

Data from China suggests that new daily cases have dropped to nearly zero since a brief spike in mid April.

Some countries may yet have reached their peak, with new daily cases in India doubling between 1 May and 5 May.

A similar trend is observed in Russia, where more than 10,000 new cases were recorded on 5 May.

Sweden’s decision to not introduce lockdown measures makes it an outlier in Europe, yet new daily cases remain relatively low and appear to be slowing.

Another country to avoid a full lockdown is South Korea, where new daily cases have seen a significant drop in recent weeks.

This trend can be largely attributed to extensive testing and a highly technological approach to tracking the outbreak in South Korea.