Worldwide coronavirus death toll passes 500,000 amid warnings of second wave – World News

The number of lives lost to coronavirus Covid-19 around the world has passed half a million.

The US-based Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Centre confirmed the grim landmark has been reached and now stands at 500,108 as of 10pm on Sunday night.

However, experts believe the real total could be far higher.

Since the start of the pandemic late last year, health services around the world have struggled to handle the deadly virus, with more than 10 million confirmed cases.

The UK is one of the hardest-hit countries, with the government under fire over mixed messaging and failure to act swiftly at the start of the crisis.

The US has the highest death toll, with 128,152 known fatalities, followed by Brazil, where 57,103 coronavirus patients have died.

The US has the highest coronavirus death toll in the world

The UK, where the official Department for Health death toll stands at 43,514, has the third highest number of confirmed deaths.

However the true figure in the UK is thought to be around 10,000 higher, based on the number of deaths registered.

The disease is believed to have originated in a food market in Wuhan, China, late last year, and claimed its first life in Europe in January.

The disease is believed to have originated in a wet market in Wuhan, China

The worldwide coronavirus death toll has now passed half a million

Since then governments have brought in lockdown measures to prevent the disease spreading, but scientists warn a second wave could follow once infection rates start to fall.

Italy, which was the first European country to introduce a lockdown, has seen 34,716 people die from Covid-19.

Spain has recorded 28,341 deaths, slightly behind France where 29,778 are known to have died after contracting Covid-19.

Containers outside a Brazilian hospital contain 75 bodies each

Germany, which introduced mass testing in March, has been able to keep its death toll below 10,000, according to official figures.

Today Boris Johnson warned that the pandemic is far from over, and called on Brits to stick to social distancing laws.

The Prime Minister – who has been criticised over the speed at which he’s lifting social distancing restrictions – told the Mail on Sunday: “You may think that you are immortal, that you won’t be a sufferer, but the bug you carry can kill your family and friends.

“I don’t want a second lockdown but wherever there is a local outbreak, whether in Ashfield or Anglesey, we will empower the local authorities to quarantine everyone who has got it, test back to the moment of infection and make the necessary closures.”